11-Year-Old Pregnant Girl in Chile Sparks Up Abortion Debate

"When I heard about this little girl my first reaction was to support abortion because I think it's the best option in this case," said Eduardo Hernandez, a 30-year-old web designer.

"It's the first online petition I've signed in my life, but I think this case really deserves it," Hernandez said. "We should have a law. I hope this case serves as precedent to have a serious discussion about abortion."

The Washington Post reports that many Chileans agree that this situation is damaging to the young girl's childhood. “We’re faced with an 11-year-old girl whose childhood has been damaged and she’s pregnant,” Nicole Salvatierra, a 26-year-old-journalist, told The Associated Press in an email exchange after earlier speaking out about the case on Twitter.

“The state is blocking a way to revert this situation. It’s twice as bad for her. That’s what’s criminal, not interrupting the pregnancy in the context that justifies it.”

But more conservative Chileans oppose the idea of abortions altogether and the nation's Senate has already rejected three bills that would have eased this ban.