The Indonesian Army has announced an end to the controversial practice of subjecting female recruits to so-called 'virginity tests.' Per the New York Times, the country's army chief Gen. Andika Perkasa said in an interview there would be "no more vaginal and cervix examinations," on cadets. The practice is widely seen as an invasive and pseudoscientific violation of human rights, though officials have often claimed it to be part of an overall health examination. "Whether the hymen was ruptured or partially ruptured was part of the examination...now there's no more of that," Perkasa said, per CNN.
The procedure, during which a doctor inserts two fingers into a woman's vagina, is based on the false belief that her virginity can be determined by whether her hymen remains intact. In actuality, there's no physical way to determine whether a woman has had sex. The World Health Organization has condemned the practice as immoral. It was not clear when Indonesia's new policy would go into effect or if other branches of the Indonesian military would follow suit. (Read more Indonesia stories.)