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Thursday 21st June 2018

Care boost for Ethiopian girls

17th April 2007

Ethiopia has announced a raft of new measures aimed at improving the reproductive health of girls and young women, who often face problems like early marriage and pregnancy, female circumcision, rape, and poor access to healthcare.


The government, in collaboration with United Nations agencies, said it was tailoring interventions to improve empowerment and access to healthcare for 10-to-24 year-olds.

Most Ethiopian young married women have limited autonomy and control over their resources, with only half of married adolescents being able to decide how their own earnings are used, a recent report on the issue said.

It found that abduction and early marriage were on the decline but still persistent. It cited the 2005 Ethiopian Demographic Health Survey which showed that 80% of women and half of men believed that there were situations when a husband was justified in beating his wife.

It said that more than half of 15-to-19 year-old females had undergone genital mutilation, with support for the harmful practice still widespread in the population.

Meanwhile, 9% of sexually active adolescent girls and 6% of boys had suffered rape, it said. The strategy document also detailed problems relating to polygamy, early marriages and pregnancies, and poor use of contraception and abortions.

According to the ministry of health, abortion in Ethiopia accounts for 60% of gynaecological and almost 30% of all obstetric and gynaecological admissions.

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