Unicef reveals widespread genital mutilation problem

    According to a new report by UNICEF, in the next decade 30 million girls are at risk of having their genitals mutilated or cut for non-medical reasons.

    The report focused on 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East where the practice is most commonly done.

    While it’s not a common practice in Western countries, it’s still a widely accepted cultural practice in other parts of the world.

    Those countries with the highest rates of prevalence of genital mutilation are concentrated in Africa from the Atlantic coast to the horn of Africa.

    Countries with a shockingly high prevalence of 90% or over include Somalia, Guinea, Djibouti and Egypt.

    Those statistics are brought to life when one realizes that a country like Egypt has a prevalence of 91%, meaning 27.2 million girls in Egypt have undergone this painful procedure, according to UNICEF.

    It is estimated by WHO that between 100 and 140 million females worldwide are living with some form of female mutilation.

    It is important to point out that the reasons behind this phenomena are complex and while the majority of women in these countries reject the notion of female mutilation, the practice has been culturally accepted for many years, making it harder for dissidents to speak out and make their opinions known.

    As a point of reference, 93% of females in Ghana, 88% of females in Iraq and 86% of females in Kenya all believe the practice of FGM/C should end. Those high numbers are consistently found in UNICEF's report.

    Written and reported by Gabriella Hafner.

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