JAKARTA, Indonesia: The Human Rights Watch (HRW) has described virginity tests for women applying to join the national police in Indonesia as “discriminatory” and demanded an end to it.
The HRW, an international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights, said that the virginity test is still widely used in Indonesia as women applicants are required to be both unmarried and virgins.
The virginity test is “a discriminatory practice that harms and humiliates women,” the associate women’s rights director at the HRW Nisha Varia said.
“Police authorities in Jakarta need to immediately and unequivocally abolish the test, and then make certain that all police recruiting stations nationwide stop administering it,” Nisha Varia was quoted as saying by a foreign news agency.
The rights group said that the tests contravene the police’s own guidelines on recruitment and violate international human rights to equality, non-discrimination and privacy.
However, the Indonesia’s police spokesperson Ronny Sompie denied virginity is checked. She said that a full medical check is done for men and women.
But the HRW said that a posting on the police’s own website this month noted that female applicants must be virgins.