Following the high incidences of rape of women and children in captivity of Islamist terror group, Boko Haram, the United Nations rights chief has urged Nigeria to show compassion and make it easier for victims who became pregnant in captivity to access abortions.
According to Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein who addressed the UN Human Rights council in a special session on Boko Haram,
“During their captivity, lasting in many cases for months or even years, women and girls have been sexually enslaved, raped and forced into so-called ‘marriages’”
He said many survivors of the horrific episode are now pregnant by their rapists and several reportedly wish to terminate these unwanted pregnancies.
However, Nigeria's abortion laws do not allow for such a procedure to be done except the life of the woman is at risk. In any other case abortions are illegal.
Al Hussin therefore strongly urged "the most compassionate possible interpretation of the current regulations in Nigeria to include the risk of suicide and risks to mental health for women and young girls who have suffered such appalling cruelty,"