Campaigners against female circumcision have scored a major victory with the approval by a United Nations committee of a resolution calling for a global ban on female genital mutilation (FGM).
The resolution, adopted by consensus by the UN general assembly's human rights committee, calls the practice harmful and a serious threat to the psychological, sexual and reproductive health of women and girls.
It calls on the UN's 193 member states to condemn the practice and launch educational campaigns for girls and boys, women and men, to eliminate it. It also urges all countries to enact and enforce legislation to prohibit FGM, to protect women and girls "from this form of violence" and to end impunity for violators.
With 110 sponsors the resolution is virtually certain to be approved by the full general assembly, which is expected to take it up in the second half of December. Although not legally binding, assembly resolutions reflect international concerns and carry moral and political weight.
The United Nations General Assembly's human rights committee unanimously voted to enact a global ban against female circumcision, instructing the UN's 193 member states to take direct action by enacting legislation and leading education campaigns for both young women and men in order to penalize violators and protect women and girls from "this form of violence."
Both articles go into detail as to what the practice involves and its use in traditionally controlling women.