Virginity Testing in Indonesia

Indonesia’s top military commander requires that all women that join the Indonesian military undergo a “virginity testing.”.  The tests are mandatory for all female recruits and are invasive and degrading. According to The Washington Post, “In Indonesia, the test is considered standard practice. Women seeking to join the military are required to strip naked and have their genitalia manually examined by a doctor, purportedly to ensure that they are virgins.” The military commander, General Moeldoko, recognizes that virginity in no way reflects one’s abilities in the armed forces; however, Moeldoko continues to defend the testing because, according to Moeldoko, the tests are a measure of morality. The alleged purpose of the tests are to insure that female recruits do not have a ‘bad habit’ and claims that there is not other way to measure a person’s morality; however, no tests for ‘morality’ are required for men. The virginity tests have also been deemed as inhumane by several organizations. “So-called ‘virginity tests’ have been recognized internationally as a violation of human rights, particularly the prohibition against ‘cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment’ under article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and article 16 of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, both of which Indonesia has ratified. In November 2014 the World Health Organization stated unambiguously, ‘There is no place for virginity (or “two-finger”) testing; it has no scientific validity.'”

“Indonesian Military Chief Defends ‘Virginity Tests’ For Female Recruits.”NPR. NPR, n.d. Web. 19 May 2015.


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