Female Genital Mutilation: A Severe Criminal Act, but Still Performed

by Project Censored
Published: Last Updated on

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) violates human rights and children’s rights, yet girls are escaping to other countries to have this illegal surgery performed. FGM is cultural act that has been done for millions of years. It is a procedure to prevent young women from illicit sexual acts, and to remove male or “unclean” body parts. Young females are escaping to Kenya to get circumcised in plantations late at night. FGM has no medical need; it actually harms the individual. It damages healthy genital tissues, and interferes with normal female functions. FGM can have immediate complications as well as long-term consequences. “In 1997, the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a joint statement with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) against the practice of FGM.” (World Health Organization) Those who perform this act can face a maximum 10-year sentence. For individuals who perform it and their victims die, they suffer a disability, or contract AIDS, they face life in prison.  Community leaders need to strictly monitor these young women and their counterparts in Kenya to prevent this from continuing.

Source: n.a. (2010, Dec). “We must intensify fight against FGM” Daily Monitor http://www.monitor.co.ug/OpEd/Editorial/-/689360/1066970/-/8yt6kg/-/index.html

Background Sources:

WHO (2010, Feb) “Female Genital Mutilation” World Health Organization Media Centre,. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs241/en/

n.a. (2008, Feb). “Female Genital Mutilation (FGM): Legal prohibitions worldwide” Center For Reproductive Rights http://reproductiverights.org/en/document/female-genital-mutilation-fgm-legal-prohibitions-worldwide

Student Researcher: Amanda Avery

Faculty Evaluator: Dr. Christina Knopf, Department of English & Communication, SUNY Potsdam