Rape victim aged 11 vows to keep and love her child
But Chilean president's words of approval spark abortion row
President Sebastian Pinera (picture: Wikimedia Commons)
Chilean President Sebastian Pinera has praised as "brave and mature" a pregnant 11-year-old rape victim who said she was happy to have the child.
The girl said during a TV interview the child would be "like having a doll".
Experts criticised Mr Pinera's comments as having no scientific foundation.
Mr Pinera supports Chile's abortion laws, which outlaw the practice in all circumstances. His critics want it legalised in cases of rape, and want the girl to be allowed an abortion.
The 11-year-old girl appeared in a TV interview on Monday, saying: "I'm going to love the baby very much, even though it comes from that man who hurt me.
"It will be like having a doll in my arms."
The girl was raped repeatedly over a two-year period by her mother's boyfriend, who has since been arrested.
Mr Pinera said he had asked the health minister to personally look after the girl's health.
"She surprised us all with words showing depth and maturity when she said that, despite the pain caused by the man who raped her, she wanted to have and take care of her baby," he said.
Forensic psychologist Giorgio Agostini said the girl would not have the mental or emotional capacity to understand her situation.
Xaverian Father Father Silvano Garello was a prolific writer and evangelist
Pontiff explains why the story of Jonah is a great lesson on God's mercy
Act a response to disappearance of booksellers known for publishing books critical of China's leaders
Confession prompts country to look again at its child protection laws
Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea release the Directory of Korean Priests 2017