Stakeholders unite to end Female Genital Mutilation in Sudan in 2018

Published on panapress, by PANA MO/VAO, 7 février 2012.

Khartoum, Sudan (PANA) – Sudanese religious scholars, senior journalists and doctors held a special event here on Tuesday in a show of solidarity with the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C), observed globally on 6 February.  Inaugurated by Mr. Ibrahim Adam Ibrahim. Sudan’s Minister of State for Welfare and Social Security, the event which was organised jointly by the National Council for Child Welfare, the Sudanese Journalists Union and UNICEF underlined government’s commitment to end FGM/C in Sudan by 2018.   

“The well-being, health and even lives of too many girls in Sudan is at risk”, Mr. Carel de Rooy, UNICEF Sudan Country Representative, said in a statement.  “We must unite now to end the harmful practice of female genital mutilation within this generation.”

Welcoming the move, Mr. de Rooy added: “Whether it is a human rights-based argument or a medical justification, FGM/C has negative impact on women and children. I am happy that Sudan has endorsed a national strategy to end this harmful practice by 2018.”

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 140 million girls and women have undergone FGM/C worldwide and three million girls are at risk of being subjected to genital mutilation or cutting every year.

Sudan is one of 28 countries where FGM/C is practised … //

… Mutilated/cut infants, girls and women face irreversible life-long health risks, among other consequences. Although this practice is declining, it remains prevalent in many countries — particularly in Africa and some parts of the Middle East.

A key multi-partner initiative in Sudan is the ‘Saleema’ social transformation campaign that celebrates girls who are not cut.

Saleema which in Arabic means complete/healthy encourages Sudanese families to discuss taboo subjects and to consider whether cutting is compatible with human rights. It encourages community decision-making and public declarations of abandonment as it is impossible for an individual to defy a social belief.

“Today’s coming together of religious scholars, senior journalists, medical practitioners and various government officials was a step in the direction of achieving the goal of abandonment of FMG/C in Sudan.” UNICEF stressed. (full text).

Links:

NPWJ’s News Digest on FGM and women’s rights, the Female Genital Mutilation program, different articles in english, some in italian and in french;

No Peace Without Justice NPWJ is an international non-governmental organisation NGO (born of a campaign of the Transnational Radical Party and is now constituent association) and a member of the Senate of the Nonviolent Radical Party Transnational and Transparty, an NGO with General (Category I) consultative status at the United Nation’s ECOSOC;

NPWJ is also a founding member of the Steering Committee of the NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court, the Italian civil society partner in the Democracy Assistance Dialogue and the host of the International Campaign for a United Nations Ban on FGM.

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