RIO DE JANEIRO – A 9-year-old girl who was carrying twins, allegedly after being raped by her stepfather, underwent an abortion Wednesday despite complaints from Brazil's Roman Catholic church.
Police said the stepfather has been jailed since last week.
Abortion is illegal in Brazil, but judges can make exceptions if the mother's life is in danger or the fetus has no chance of survival.
Fatima Maia, director of the public university hospital where the abortion was performed, said the 15-week-old pregnancy posed a serious risk to the 80-pound (36-kilogram) girl.
"She is very small. Her uterus doesn't have the ability to hold one, let alone two children," Maia told the Jornal do Brasil newspaper.
But Marcio Miranda, a lawyer for the Archdiocese of Olinda and Recife in northeastern Brazil, said the girl should have carried the twins to term and had a Caesarean section.
"It's the law of God: Do not kill. We consider this murder," Miranda said in comments reported by O Globo.
Calls to Miranda were not immediately returned.
Brazil is home to more Catholics than any other nation.