MCWO in full support of bill proposing ban on female genital mutilation

European Women’s Lobby estimate around 2 million women are affected worldwide.

The Malta Confederation of Women's Organisations (MCWO) has said it supports the initiative taken by Labour MP Chris Fearne to table a private members' bill in Parliament proposing the introduction of a law banning Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). 

"This is in keeping with the provisions of the Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating domestic violence and violence against women," said the MCWO in a statement released today, which said that according to the European Women's Lobby, about 2 million women and girls worldwide are subjected to FGM.

FGM refers to the partial or total removal or alteration of the external female genital organs for non-medical reasons. It is considered a form of violence against women and girls, and is mostly carried out on young girls between infancy and the age of 15.

"Studies have shown a correlation between FGM and the high infant and maternal mortality and morbidity in African countries where FGM is prevalent since some forms of FGM may affect childbirth. There is also clinical evidence that FGM presents a serious risk in the transmission of HIV/AIDS, especially among societies who practice it as an initiation rite using the same instruments on many girls at the same time," the MCWO said.

"We hope governments and communities will come together on a global scale to support the promotion of the Human Rights of women and children for the total elimination of FGM."

Malta Today reported yesterday that the proposed bill aims to outlaw the practice of FGM, and is set to be tabled in parliament after the summer recess.

If the law is approved, Malta will join a growing list of countries which have criminalized the practice, including Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

The law, if approved, would also outlaw FGM performed on Maltese citizens and permanent residents in Malta and abroad, and would also criminalise the practice carried out by Maltese people abroad.

There is currently no indication that FGM is being performed yet in Malta, but authorities do not have statistics on FGM in Malta, since medical professionals working on the island are bound by confidentiality and are not obliged by law to report cases.

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Since the majority of Somali women have it done at a young age, saying that this has never been encountered in Malta is probably just another of the whitewashing that is going on in regards to these 'illegal immigrants' Another aspect of their culture that is sure to enrich our poor Maltese culture that so far has not seen fit to mutilate is young girs. Oh, the beauties of multiculturalism! And to declare it illegal would probably go against PC although this practice definetely goes against Human Rights and could be classes as cruel and unusual punishment on the basis of gender - but then PC trumps Human Rights every time in this Orwellian and distopic world we live in.
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Sometimes they refer to it as female circumcison!