The Dreadful Process that is FGM
FGM is usually performed by professional circumcisers; women who have a high reputation within their societies. It is also performed by traditional midwives and occasionally by healers, nurses or doctors trained in Western medicine. The procedure is usually performed without anaesthetic and under dreadful and unhygienic circumstances.
THE CUTTING INSTRUMENTS
- Razor blades
- Pieces of broken glass
HOW MANY FORMS OF FGM EXIST?
The World Health Organisation (WHO) differentiates between four different types of Female Genital Mutilation:
CIRCUMCISION Type 1 + 2 (80%)
Type 1: Excision of the clitoris prepuce (“Sunna-circumcision”) and of the clitoris or parts thereof.
Type 2: Excision of the clitoris prepuce, the clitoris and the inner lips or parts thereof.
CIRCUMCISIONType 3 (15%)
Type 3 Excision of part of or all of the external genitals (“infibulation”, also referred to as “Pharaonic Circumcision”).
- The clitoris and the labia are cut without anaesthetic. A variety of sharp objects are used, such as knives, scissors and razors – usually not disinfected.
- Afterwards, the labia stumps are sewn together.
- A hole remains the size of a match head for urination resulting in lifelong mental and physical pain. Afterwards the remaining parts of the outer lips are sewn together leaving a small hole for urine and menstrual flow.
- The scar needs to be opened before intercourse or giving birth, which causes additional pain. Infibulation is mainly spread in the Horn of Africa and its neighbouring areas – in Somalia, Djibouti and Eritrea, as well as in the northern part of Sudan and in the southern part of Egypt. It is the most severe form of FGM.
CIRCUMCISION Type 4 (5%)
Type 4 Any other procedure, which injures or circumcises the female genitalia. Pricking, piercing, cutting or stretching of the clitoris or the labia, also burning or scarring the genitals as well as ripping of the vaginal opening or the introduction of corrosive substances or herbs into the vagina in order to tighten it.