Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Monday, October 22, 2007

Egypt, female circumcision deeply rooted in tradition

As many as 97 percent of the Egyptian women, Christians and Muslims, aged 15 to 49 have undergone as UN refers to call it, genital mutilation or FGM, the AFP reports.

Few women dare to question the tradition that goes back to the time of the pharaohs, despite the stories of bleeding, infections and other nefarious effects. Many women how has undergone the FGM are afraid of what will happen if their daughters do not do it.

The paper reports that around 60 Egyptian women, all circumcised, are gathered to listen to a gynecologist from the NGO.

“People have to know if the girl is normal, if (her sexual organs) are too big, or deformed?” says another. She is echoing a belief among many women here that too ‘prominent’ genitals must be cut off -- at least if they are female.

The gynaecologist states that “comparing female and male circumcision is like the difference between clipping a nail and cutting the whole finger off.”

According to the article the government has even enlisted the country's top religious authorities to drive home the message against what UNICEF describes “one of the most persistent, pervasive and silently endured human rights violations.”

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