Politician’s claims about abortion following rape are myths

19 March 2016http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Peru-Politician-Vaginal-Douche-as-Good-as-Abortion-After-Rape-20160319-0045.htmlFollowing a debate over abortion in the case of rape, Peruvian Alianza Popular congresswoman Luciana Leon claimed in an interview that other alternatives exist aside from therapeutic abortion following rape and that a vaginal wash is more effective than abortion when a woman has been raped. “To talk about abortion many stages have to pass … if there has been sexual violence you can go and do a vaginal wash,” Leon said, much to the surprise of her debate opponent, Frente Amplio member Isabel Cedano. To give her some credit, she also said women can take emergency contraception as a first step.Susana Chavez, executive director of Promsex in Peru and coordinator of CLACAI (Latin American Campaign against Unsafe Abortion), commented:“It is very embarrassing, but such arguments have been used by opponents who do not want there to be any debate on abortion. Another false argument was also put forward which is untrue, that during rape, no lubrication occurs, therefore pregnancy cannot take place. If the woman becomes pregnant, then it is proof that she had enjoyed the rape. This ignores the terrible experience of rape that in most cases occurs in the homes of women and girls, with victims who are are minors and male perpetrators who are known to them.Marcy Bloom, long-time pro-choice activist in the USA, commented:“A few years ago, a right-wing US Senatorial candidate stated that pregnancy cannot occur from rape because the woman’s body shuts down and ovulation cannot occur. This ignorance and misogyny re: rape, violence against women, how pregnancy occurs, etc. are all truly unbelievable.”