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Paraguay

    August 13, 2015

    Reports that an 11-year-old girl who became pregnant after she was repeatedly raped, allegedly by her step father, gave birth today are a tragic reminder of the urgent need for Paraguay to repeal its draconian anti-abortion law, said Amnesty International.

    “We are very pleased to hear that both ‘Mainumby’ and the newborn are in good health but she is lucky to be alive. Only time will tell the true extent of the physical and psychological consequences of her tragic ordeal,” said Erika Guevara, Americas Director at Amnesty International.  
     
    “The fact that ‘Mainumby’ did not die does not excuse the human rights violations she suffered at the hands of the Paraguayan authorities, who decided to gamble with her health, life and integrity despite overwhelming evidence that this pregnancy was extremely risky and despite the fact that she was a rape-victim and a child.”

    June 10, 2015

    International pressure is increasing on the Paraguayan authorities to urgently provide the girl raped when she was 10-year-old the medical care she desperately needs, including the option of the termination of her pregnancy, Amnesty International said after the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights called for urgent action to protect her human rights. The State has 72 hours to respond to the Inter American Commission.

    The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is the latest in a long line of international experts who have voiced their outrage at the horrific way this young girl is being treated by the Paraguayan authorities.

    May 20, 2015

    Open letter from Amnesty International’s Secretary General, Salil Shetty, to the President of the Republic of Paraguay, Horacio Cartes

    Mr. President,

    Amnesty International, a worldwide movement that campaigns for a world where human rights are enjoyed by all, is deeply concerned about the situation of a 10-year-old girl reportedly raped by her stepfather and pregnant as a result. The pregnancy was detected three weeks ago and yet the state continues to violate her human rights without offering her the possibility of an abortion.

    To allow this girl who is just 10 years old to continue with her pregnancy is clearly cruel. Mr. President, the future of this girl is in your hands.

    May 15, 2015

    By Guadalupe Marengo, Deputy Director Americas Program Amnesty International.

    Every now and then there comes along a case that seems too tragic to comprehend -- where cruelty from one individual to another is compounded and amplified by a callous governmental response. That is how I feel about the case of a 10-year-old pregnant girl, who was raped by her step-father, only to find the Paraguayan authorities are denying her the option of an abortion.

    It is a story that has attracted attention from all over the world, with many shocked that a young child could be treated in such a way by her own government, which is supposed to protect her.

    According to the World Health Organization child pregnancies are extremely dangerous for the health of young girls as they can lead to complications and death in some cases, especially as their bodies are “not fully developed to carry a pregnancy.” This 10 year old girl is facing a great risk to her life and physical and psychological health, both in the short, medium and long term.

    May 08, 2015

    The clock is ticking and Paraguayan authorities are still not ensuring that all options are available for a raped 10-year-old girl, including safe abortion services, Amnesty International and a group of national and international human rights organizations said today.

    “The world is now watching Paraguay. We are calling on authorities there to show humanity and respect the dignity and wishes of this young girl and her mother. To do anything else would be a clear breach of international human rights law and a violation of this young girl’s rights,” said Guadalupe Marengo, Deputy Director for the Americas at Amnesty International, after more than 150,000 of its members and supporters worldwide signed a petition to support the girl getting access to all medical options.  

    A few days ago a judicial order set up an interdisciplinary panel to assess the young girl.

    April 29, 2015

    Failure by the Paraguayan authorities to provide a safe abortion to a 10-year-old rape survivor could have devastating consequences on her health and will heap injustice on tragedy, said Amnesty International today. The organization is now calling on the government to intervene to ensure the girl gets all the medical treatment she requires, including the termination of the unwanted pregnancy.

    In Paraguay, abortion is only permitted when the life of the woman or girl is at risk. In any other circumstances, even if pregnancy is the result of rape, incest or when the foetus has a severe malformation, abortion is not permitted. This restrictive abortion law is in violation of international law.

    “The physical and psychological impact of forcing this young girl to continue with an un-wanted pregnancy is tantamount to torture. The Paraguayan authorities cannot sit idly by while this young rape-survivor is forced to endure more agony and torment,” said Guadalupe Marengo, Americas Deputy Director at Amnesty International.

    “Forcing this child to carry a baby to term, against her will, could have devastating health consequences.”

    August 08, 2014
    "We lived at the side of the road, we lived badly. Several members of the community died in accidents, of disease. Nobody respected us. Now this is our victory. I am very happy, and I cry because my grandmother, my father and many members of my family did not have the opportunity I have today to enjoy our land. I'm grateful to everyone" --  Aparicia Gonzalez, an Indigenous Enxet woman from the Sawhoyamaxa community in Paraguay

    This week, as the United Nations marks the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples (August 9th), we want to take a moment to celebrate two crucial recent victories in the long struggle for the recognition of the rights of Indigenous peoples.

    June 14, 2014

    Investigations into the deaths of 17 people during a forced eviction in Paraguay two years ago have been completely skewed in favour of the police, said Amnesty International today.

    On 15 June 2012, 11 peasants and six police officers died when more than 300 police officers, many of them armed, moved in to evict around 90 peasants occupying land in the Curuguaty district of Paraguay. While 12 people will stand trial next week for the killing of the police officers and other related crimes, no official has been charged for the deaths of the peasants.

    “It is appalling that two years after this tragic event there has been no full and impartial investigation. The Paraguayan authorities must right this imbalance and fully investigate all those responsible for the deaths, on both sides of the violence,” said Guadalupe Marengo, Deputy Director for the Americas Programme.

    June 11, 2014

    The law signed today by the President of Paraguay that enables the Sawhoyamaxa to return to their ancestral land is a triumph for an indigenous community that has been fighting for its rights for more than 20 years, said Amnesty International.

    April 25, 2014
    Mobilization Akye populations Axa and Sawhoyamaxa Paraguay (AI)

     

    On 24 April the plenary of the Paraguayan Senate voted on a bill to return 14,404 hectares of traditional land to the Sawhoyamaxa indigenous community. The decision of the Senate is a major step forward to ensure compliance with the 2006 judgement of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

    The passing of the bill will allow the State to expropriate the land and to return it to the Sawhoyamaxa indigenous community by paying the landowner compensation. After the Senate, the bill will have to be discussed and approved by the Lower Chamber (Cámara de Diputados) and subsequently enacted (promulgada) by the President of Paraguay.

    June 14, 2013

    The lack of effective actions by Paraguay’s authorities to carry out a comprehensive investigation into the deaths of 17 people during a raid a year ago is worrying, Amnesty International said today.

    On 15 June 2012, 11 peasants and six police officers died and several were injured after clashes erupted during a raid in the Curuguaty district of Paraguay’s Canindeyú region.

    Earlier this month a court began preliminary hearings into the case of 12 peasants facing charges including illegal occupation of land, criminal association and the killings of the six police officers in nine of the cases. No one has been charged for the deaths of the 11 peasants.
    The hearings are currently suspended.

    According to the prosecutor’s investigation the police officers opened fire against the peasants in self defence. However, those conclusions contrast with reports by non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and eyewitnesses regarding the potential responsibility of the police in the deaths.

    March 11, 2013

    The Paraguayan authorities must take concrete steps to address the concerns facing the country with regard to human rights, Amnesty International said in a briefing prepared ahead of the review of the Paraguayan State being undertaken today and tomorrow in Geneva by the UN Human Rights Committee. Of particular concern is the state of the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

    Amnesty International deplores the fact that there is no effective mechanism for dealing with Indigenous land claims and that judgments handed down by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights calling for the restitution of their ancestral lands to three Indigenous communities have not been fully complied with. Without access to their land, the very survival of the communities is at risk.

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