Body of pregnant teenager found at boyfriend's family home sparks protests in Argentina

The body of 14-year-old Chiara Paez was found in May

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The Independent US

The body of a pregnant teenager found under the patio of her boyfriend’s family house in Rufino, Argentina, has sparked mass protests in the country.

A post-mortem showed Chiara Paez's death was the result of beatings to the head, face and body, according to Reuters.

Traces of a drug used in abortions were also found.

The 14-year-old's body was found on 11 May and a vigil was attended by thousands the following day.

It is thought that her 16-year-old boyfriend, Manuel, has been charged with aggravated murder, femicide and forced abortion.

"The evidence comes from Manuel's own statements, who accepted responsibility as being the perpetrator of the crime," Prosecutor Alejandro Sinopolis was quoted as saying in La Nacion newspaper, according to Reuters.

Paez's death has incited outrage across the nation and demonstrations against 'femicide' been taking place in many cities, as well as in neighbouring countries Chile and Uruguay.

Hundreds of thousands of protesters have been holding up signs with the words "Ni una menos", which means "not one less". A hashtag has also been trending on Twitter, garnering even more support.

"The deplorable case of this young girl has triggered a reaction in society and has raised awareness about femicides in Argentina," Ada Beatriz, head of women's group The Meeting House, told Reuters.

"We're saying femicide is not a private, hidden matter but something that affects all of society because when a woman is killed it affects the whole family and children," she said.

 

According to what Fabiana Tunez, head of women’s rights group La Casa del Encuentro, told AFP, a woman dies every 31 hours in Argentina. 

Gabriela Alegre, a lawmaker from Argentina, told AFP: “The current situation shows that legislation and prison sentences are not enough. We have to confront the problem by changing the culture and educating people."

Additional reporting by Reuters

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