Evolutionary biologist and atheist professor Richard Dawkins has spoken out against the government of Paraguay's decision not to perform a late-term abortion on a raped 11-year-old girl, and slammed Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee's faith-based morality as "truly loathsome" for siding with the decision.
"Mike Huckabee demonstrates how truly loathsome faith-based "morality" can be. People have been known to vote for him," Dawkins wrote Thursday on his Twitter page.
"The moral decision is starkly simple. A raped 10-year-old suffers. The fetus that threatens to ruin her life does not," he added.
The young Paraguayan girl, who was raped allegedly by her stepfather when she was 10, but has since turned 11, gave birth to a healthy girl last week via Caesarean section, and named her Milagros, which is Spanish for miracles.
The raped girl's mother had previously asked the government to allow her daughter to have a late-term abortion, but the traditionally Roman Catholic South American country ruled that it would not grant permission for the procedure.
While some groups, such as Amnesty International, have claimed that the young girl's human rights were violated because she gave birth to a baby instead of having a third-trimester abortion, Huckabee said in an interview that taking the life of the unborn baby would not have solved the tragedy.
"Let nobody be misled, a 10-year-old girl being raped is horrible. But does it solve the problem by taking the life of an innocent child — that's really the issue," Huckabee told CNN on Sunday.
"When an abortion happens, there are two victims," the GOP candidate added. "One is the child, the other is that birth mother, who often will go through extraordinary guilt years later when she begins to think through what happened, with the baby, with her."
Huckabee, who is an ordained Baptist minister, continued: "I just come out on the side that life is precious, every life has worth and value."
Dawkins previously stirred controversy over his comments on another abortion issue, concerning unborn children diagnosed with Down syndrome.
In a Twitter message in August 2014, the atheist author, famous for his The God Delusion bestseller, said that parents of such babies should "abort it and try again," because it would be "immoral" to have such a child.
He later issued an apology for the way he expressed himself.
"My phraseology may have been tactlessly vulnerable to misunderstanding, but I can't help feeling that at least half the problem lies in a wanton eagerness to misunderstand," Dawkins wrote.