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A high court judge has ruled that a 13-year-old pregnant schoolgirl has the mental capacity to decide whether or not to opt for an abortion.
The girl, who can only be named as "A," went for medical tests after her grandmother noticed her growing bump.
But when a local hospital found she was pregnant, the teenager, who still lives at home with her parents, said she wanted a termination, as she didn't feel ready to start her own family.
North West local health authority bosses arranged for the schoolgirl to see a psychiatrist to assess her mental capacity to understand her options.
The psychiatrist concluded she was able to explain her wishes to terminate the pregnancy, as "she felt that she could not cope with its continuance and it would stress her to a considerable degree."
At an emergency hearing in mid-March, tests found the teenager was probably 20 weeks pregnant.
After hearing the psychiatrist's findings, the high court judge then concluded it was for the girl to "decide what she wishes to do."
In his ruling, Justice Nicholas Mostyn said, "I am completely satisfied that [she] has sufficient understanding and intelligence."
Doctors and the hospital needed the high court ruling to protect them from being sued if they carried out the abortion.
But pro-life campaigner Andy Stephenson from Abort67 is shocked by the judge's decision.
"This young girl is soon to be yet another victim of our twisted system that promotes sexual activity at an ever earlier age, followed by the tax-funded death of any resulting 'mistakes,'" he says.
"I find it utterly abhorrent that she is being deceived by those who should be protecting her and her child," he says. "It is complete nonsense that a court can rule that she is competent to make such a decision when the facts about abortion are systematically hidden from her by those who provide abortion, schools, and tragically many pro-life groups.
"This is why Abort67 uses nonconsensual means to expose the truth that abortion is not health care but an act of violence that kills an innocent and defenseless human being," Stephenson concludes.
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