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We are thrilled to report that the appeal in our campaign to get Justice for Soheir was successful! In January, the appeals court in Mansoura sentenced Dr. Fadl to two years in jail for manslaughter and three months for performing female genital mutilation (FGM). Soheir’s father received a three-month suspended sentence under the anti-FGM law. The case was the first time that the 2008 law was used. The doctor’s clinic, where the FGM was performed, was also ordered to be shut down for one year.
This first ever FGM trial in Egypt is hugely important in a country that has the highest number of affected women and girls in the world. It is also extremely significant that a medical professional was sentenced as medicalization of FGM in Egypt is very high — more than 75% of cases are performed by medical practitioners. With these convictions, Egypt is sending a strong message that FGM will not be tolerated and puts medical practitioners on notice.
This will be an important stepping stone towards ending this extreme human rights violation once and for all.
Soheir was just one of an estimated 125 million women worldwide who have undergone some form of FGM. Of those, 1 in 5 lives in Egypt. We estimate that 91 percent of Egypt’s female population has undergone the procedure which often involves cutting off parts of the female genitalia and, in some cultures, sewing together the labia and is sometimes practiced under the belief that it may prevent extramarital sexual activity.
Thank you for believing in Equality Now and our work to defend the rights of adolescent girls like Soheir.