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Egypt authorities must combat FGM: HRW - Daily News Egypt

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Egypt authorities must combat FGM: HRW

“Lack of investigations, prosecutions, and convictions fosters FGM,” group says

Following Egypt’s first trial on a female genital mutilation case (FGM) ending in acquittals, the authorities need to take serious steps to end the practice, including “implementation of the law and a national strategy to raise awareness of the harms FGM,” Human Rights Watch said in a statement on Thursday.

The trial centered on a 13-year-old girl, Soheir El-Batei, who died during an FGM procedure in 2013. Both the doctor who cut the girl, and her father were acquitted on 20 November. Public prosecution recently filed an appeal against the court decision.

“Female genital mutilation is banned in Egypt but the practice continues possibly because there is a lack of investigations, prosecutions, and convictions,” said Rothna Begum, researcher on women’s rights in the Middle East and North Africa for Human Rights Watch.

FGM involves partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, it interferes with the body’s natural functioning, and may lead to short and long term health consequences, the group said in their statement.

The practice was banned by the law in 2008, after the death of an 11-year-old girl during the procedure. Since then, this has been the only case resulting in a trial as activists state due to local officials considering FGM a private family issue rather than a crime.

“This case was an important test of Egypt’s legislation criminalising female genital mutilation,” Begum said. “It is clearly not enough to just put a law on the statute books; it must be enforced.”

Egypt has ratified international children’s rights and women’s rights treaties that require it to hold private actors responsible for violence against women and children.

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  • Al Masry

    Thanks Ms. Abaza for your report. It is national tragedy and the root cause of family breakup, psychological problems, population explosion, etc. Beside, it is challenge to Allah (SWT) creation of male and female. Family planning and education combined with government enforcement and withholding subsidies could have an effect. This shows how rotten Egyptian society is down to the core values.

  • Al Masry

    It shows how Egyptian man is psycho-Moran, lack of self confidence and understanding of Allah creation of men/women. Shame on Ministry of Health for not developing an effective, comprehensive Family Planning program.

  • Al Masry

    Evil act: I can not imagine how anyone rub this little girl what the creator gave her? This evil act has enormous psychological and social impact on our society. How stupid and ignorant are men can be? Read the Quran and learn the true Islamic values given to all humans, men and women. Psycho-Moran!

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