Colombian Girl, 10, Gives Birth to Baby Girl
Doctors delivered the baby by caesarean section after the girl, a member of the indigenous Wayuu tribe, arrived at a hospital in Manaure in floods of tears.
The girl, who has not been named, was 39 weeks pregnant when she appeared at the hospital in pain from contractions and bleeding. It was the first time doctors had seen the girl during her pregnancy.
After the operation, the mother and baby - a healthy daughter weighing just 5lbs - were said to be “doing well”.
Despite the girl being under age, Colombian laws allow indigenous tribes such as the Wayuu a degree of self-governance. The tribes maintain their own sovereignty and cultural traditions.
Giving birth at a young age is said to be typical of Wayuu customs.
The identity of the father has not been revealed, but local media have suggested it could be a 15-year-old boy, others have claimed it is a 30-year-old man.
The birth has led to fierce debate in the country, with some calling the practice “shocking”.
Efrain Pacheco Casadiego, director at the hospital where the baby was born, said: “We’ve already seen similar cases of Wayuu girls. At a time when [the girls] should be playing with dolls, they go to having to take care of a baby.”
Others said the tribe’s culture needs to be respected.