Mike Huckabee defends decision to deny 11-year-old raped by her stepfather an abortion

The Republican candidate claimed an abortion would only compound the tragedy

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The Independent Online

Mike Huckabee has defended the internationally condemned decision not to allow a Paraguayan 11-year-old child to have an abortion after she was raped by her stepfather.

The child, who was raped at the age of 10, was denied access to a termination by authorities in Paraguay, a country with some of the most restrictive abortion laws in the world.

Paraguay only allows an abortion in cases where the mother’s life is in danger and medical authorities ruled the child did not meet this condition despite the physical risk associated with carrying a child at such a young age.

Amnesty International, which led the global outcry over the decision, described the situation as “almost too heart-wrenching to comprehend”. 

Huckabee, who is hoping to secure the Republican 2016 Presidential nomination, is firmly opposed to abortion in all circumstances, including rape and incest. He recently admitted to being "open" to the idea of using federal troops to stop women from having abortions at clinics in the US, because "all Americans should be protected".

The controversial politician defended Paraguay’s ruling when he appeared on CNN’s State if the Union, insisting that allowing the child to terminate the pregnancy would be the state taking an innocent life. 

“A ten tear-old girl being raped is horrible,” he said. “But does it solve a problem by taking the life of an innocent child? That’s really the issue. […] Let’s not compound the tragedy by taking yet another life.

“I just come down on the side that every life is precious. I don’t think we discount the intrinsic worth of any human being, and I don’t know where else to go with it."

He claimed there are always two victims in an abortion - the foetus and the mother. [“The mother] will go through extraordinary guilt years later when she begins to think through what happened, with the baby, with her.

“If life matters, and if that’s a person, then every life matters,”