Brazil Prez Flouts Church, Backs Abortion Docs

Girl has popular support
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2009 12:53 PM CDT
Father Jose Cardoso Sobrinho, archbishop for Olinda and Recife (northeastern Brazil) speaks with journalists in Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil March 6, 2009.   (AFP/Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Brazil’s president today attacked the archbishop who excommunicated the doctors who performed an abortion on a 9-year-old rape victim. The girl had allegedly been impregnated with twins by her stepfather, who was not disciplined when Jose Cardoso Sobrinho excommunicated the girl’s mother and her doctors. “In this case, medicine is more right than the Church,” said President Luiz Inacio da Silva.

Sobrinho defended his actions, saying he hadn’t excommunicated the stepfather because “a graver act than (rape) is abortion, to eliminate an innocent life.” The Vatican backed his decision, and one cardinal said the unborn twins were innocent. But an outraged public has largely sided with the “sinners,” CNN reports. One of the doctors got a standing ovation today at a women’s health conference.