Mexico City, Mexico (CNN) — A pregnant 10-year-old, allegedly raped by her stepfather, has become the latest lightning rod in the country’s heated abortion debate.
The girl’s stepfather has been arrested. But advocates on both sides of the issue say their battle is just beginning.
“This girl is much more than an isolated case,” said Adriana Ortiz-Ortega, a researcher at Mexico’s National Autonomous University who has written two books on abortion in Mexico, “and there is much more influence now from conservative groups that are trying to prevent the legalization of abortion.”
Abortion is legal in Mexico’s capital city, but prohibited or significantly restricted in most of the country’s states. The girl’s home state of Quintana Roo, on the Yucatan peninsula, allows abortion in cases of rape during the first 90 days of the pregnancy. But the 10-year-old girl is at 17½ weeks, nearly a month past that limit.
Advocacy groups are calling for federal officials and the United Nations to investigate Quintana Roo’s handling of the matter, claiming officials did not inform her of her abortion rights.