Once in awhile the UN does something we can support.
As you read this news account, know that many African refugees in America (and in 30 other countries!) still believe in this brutal practice (adding “vibrant” cultural diversity/enrichment to your community).
From Japan Times:
HARGEISA, SOMALIA – The 30 Somali teenagers — both boys and girls — all agreed: Female genital mutilation is harmful and the practice should be abandoned. But what they really meant, they revealed moments later, is that girls should still have their genitalia cut — just not sewn shut.
“It’s our tradition, and if the girls are not subjected to ‘suna’ (cutting) she will not be accepted for marriage,” said Asthma Ibrahim Jabril, 17.
The students, who are part of an after-school club in Somaliland that the U.N. children’s agency helps fund, discuss issues like child labor, early marriage and female genital mutilation in a classroom with several large hearts scrawled along the walls. Somaliland is a semi-autonomous region in northern Somalia that has remained largely peaceful during Somalia’s decades of conflict.
UNICEF is weaving a delicate campaign to educate communities in Somaliland about the harms of female genital mutilation and to get leaders, who are meeting there this month to debate the practice, to denounce it.
Child rights advocates in nearly 30 countries are fighting to reduce the number of girls subjected to the cutting of their genitalia, a practice that goes back thousands of years and that Somali practitioners often link to Islamic requirements.
Egyptian pharaohs blamed, not Islam
Experts try to convince them that this is not a religious practice, but they are having none of it!
Officials with UNICEF tried to underscore that they do not believe female genital mutilation is required by Islam, though it is not strictly practiced by Muslims. Haydar Nasser, a UNICEF official who is Iraqi by birth but now a Canadian citizen, told the leaders that they were following a custom first practiced by the Egyptians some 6,000 years ago, long before Islam was founded.
“So the question to you to discuss today is why as a Muslim practice do you employ a pharaoh practice, pharaohs who went to hell because they are ‘kaffirs,’” he said, using the Arabic word for someone who doesn’t believe in Islam.
Thanks, but no thanks!
At the end of the daylong meeting that UNICEF had hoped would end in a decision to abandon female genital mutilation, the religious leaders — including the minister of religious affairs — say they could not agree to abandon suna. The practice of female genital cutting will continue.
I’m glad to see that the UN is trying, it’s better than turning a blind eye in the name of cultural relativism.