Ministry of Labor: Underage pregnant girls were not sexually abused

No sexual abuse or sexual exploitation has been identified in the two new cases of teenage pregnancy, involving two girls sheltered at the May 25 institution for children with social problems in Skopje. They got pregnant after having consensual sexual relations with boys from the institutions with whom they were in a relationship, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy says Tuesday.

A 15-year of teenage girl terminated her pregnancy after both the custodian and herself gave their consent, for which her mother was also informed.

A 17-year old girl had decided to keep her baby. After having been successfully resocialized according to experts, she has been returned to her parents. She will give birth after she turns eighteen.

Several incidents at the May 25 institution sounded the alarm last week after an NGO, the European Roma Rights Center, draw the public’s attention by revealing that a 13-year old girl from the institution had had her baby aborted after being impregnated following years of sexual exploitation.

The Ministry of Labor and Social Policy have said it suspected the girl had been sexually exploited and urged the Interior Ministry and the Public Prosecutor’s Office to launch investigation.

The Ministry said it was investigating all aspects of the case falling under its competence.

Also, the Interior Ministry on Monday said police had filed criminal charges against a man after admitting he sexually assaulted the 13-year old girl last year in November.

Also on Monday, the institution’s director Stevco Sokolovski filed his resignation citing ‘moral reasons’.

In a statement issued Tuesday, the Basic Public Prosecution in Skopje said it had formed cases after written reports filed by the MoI in relation to the case involving the abused underage girl and it was examining reports about how the institution had been operating.

After the girl’s parents pressed charges, the Public Prosecution has opened a case involving abuse of office and neglect of duty against staff in the institution