It is known as female genital mutilation, a practice that is prevalent in many countries. There are laws against it, but that is not enough to resolve what has become a complex global issue.

It is the focus of growing debate in Africa and Asia where it is most practised. But it is also an issue in the West, with tens of thousands of cases among immigrant communities.

France is one of many countries where it is banned. Action is also tough here, with more than a hundred prosecutions for mutilation carried out on French soil.

Legislation also covers cases where girls are sent abroad to states where the cutting of the female external genitalia is still legal.

Euronews met the Senegalese-born author Khady Koïta, who has campaigned for many years on the issue in Paris. A mother of four, now based in Brussels, she recounted her own experience at the age of seven.


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Comment by Napoleon Bonaparte on March 5, 2013 at 8:46am

It was done to me shortly after I was born and I'm not Jewish. It's a useless, dangerous stupid thing to do. The custom is dying out in many advanced parts of the world but in the Philippines, for example, the government has it done to all boys at the age of 10. Ridiculous !

What is done to women is even worse based on my understanding that the clitoris is removed. It's an unbelievably cruel thing to do to a girl.

It's based on religion and superstition. What else !

Comment by Loren Miller on March 5, 2013 at 8:07am

There are very few things that piss me off like THIS pisses me off.  No woman, no girl should be subjected to ANY form of mutilation.  It is a violation of their personal integrity and as such is utterly intolerable.  I agree with the male singer in the video that both men and women have to become active in opposing and arresting this supposed tradition.

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