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Feminist News


August-30-04

Schoolgirls Forced to Undergo Female Genital Mutilation in Kenya

A new report shows that more than 100 schoolgirls were forced to undergo the harmful practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) in the West Pokot District of Kenya in August. The East African Standard reports that most of the girls were between the ages of 10 and 18 years old.

According to a local human rights group, the survey shows "that most parents have resolved to circumcise their daughters in April and August instead of the usual December holiday. This is because in December, anti-FGM groups usually intensify their campaigns," reports the East African Standard.

Female genital mutilation, sometimes called female genital cutting (FGC) or female circumcision, is the cutting or removal of all or a portion of the female genitals for cultural, not medical, reasons. FGM leads to lifelong pain and problems with sexual health and childbirth. Depending on the environment and type of the procedure, FGM can lead to serious health issues such as infection, illness and death. Approximately 2 million girls are mutilated every year. Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia, and the Sudan account for 75 percent of all cases.

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Media Resources: East African Standard 8/27/04