The case of a pregnant 11-year-old girl -- who was raped in Chile by her mother's partner -- has set off a national debate about abortion in one of the most socially conservative countries in Latin America, the Huffington Post website reports today (July 6, 2013).
Chileans were outraged yesterday after state TV reported that the girl is 14 weeks pregnant and was raped repeatedly over the past two years. Police in the remote southern city of Puerto Montt arrested her mother's partner, who confessed to raping the fifth grader.
Doctors say the girl's life and that of the fetus are at high risk. But in Chile, ending the pregnancy is not an option.
Chile allowed abortions for medical reasons until they were outlawed in 1973 by Gen. Augusto Pinochet's dictatorship. The current government of conservative President Sebastian Pinera has opposed any loosening of the prohibition.