World

UN human rights experts say Paraguay has failed to protect pregnant 10-year-old who was raped

  • People protest against child abuse, demanding stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child.  (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)

    People protest against child abuse, demanding stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child. (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)  (The Associated Press)

  • A girl holds a handwrittem message that reads in Spanish, "No to abuse," at a protest against child abuse and demand of stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child.  (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)

    A girl holds a handwrittem message that reads in Spanish, "No to abuse," at a protest against child abuse and demand of stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child. (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)  (The Associated Press)

  • People protest against child abuse, demanding stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child.  (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)

    People protest against child abuse, demanding stronger penalties for violators, in downtown Asuncion Paraguay, Monday, May 11, 2015. The nation has been split over the case of a pregnant 10-year-old girl denied an abortion. The argument over the girl has drawn unusually strong attention to the issues of child abuse and abortion, which is banned in all cases except when the mother's life is in danger. Police said Saturday they had arrested the girl's fugitive stepfather, who is accused of raping the child. (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)  (The Associated Press)

United Nations human rights experts say Paraguay's government has failed to protect a 10-year-old rape victim who is being denied an abortion.

In a statement released Monday in Geneva, the four experts said Paraguay has refused to provide treatment to save the life of the girl, who is five months pregnant, "including safe and therapeutic abortion in a timely manner."

The case set off a national debate in Paraguay, where abortion is banned except when the mother's life is in danger.

The World Health Organization says child pregnancies can be dangerous, potentially leading to complications and death because "the bodies of young girls are not developed to carry on with a pregnancy."

The girl's father-in-law is accused of raping her and has been jailed.