No Virtue in Virginity Testing

Eliminating violence against women means banishing the medically unnecessary, traumatic practice of of so-called “virginity testing,” the UN said in a statement at the World Congress of Gynecology and Obstetrics in Rio de Janeiro.

The vaginal examination is still customary in some 20 countries across the globe to assess women's “virtue, honor or social value” and sometimes on victims of rape. The practice is a human rights violation and a form of gender discrimination that has no clinical grounding, and cannot prove whether a girl or woman has had intercourse. Health professionals must be made aware of these facts, the WHO said, urging governments to enforce laws banning the practice.

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