International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation

6 February 2015


About half of the girls in this class at the New Beinzeid Preparatory School near Asyout in Upper Egypt have been subjected to FGM – mostly by midwives. © Omar Gharzeddine/UNFPA

The sixth of February is the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM, a day to raise awareness of the practice and to work towards its elimination.

Female genital mutilation involves altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons. It is a human rights violation, and can cause short- and long-term health complications, including chronic pain, infections, complications in childbirth, and infertility.

For about 1 in every 5 girls subjected to FGM, the procedure is performed by a trained medical professional. The medicalization of the practice represents a threat to efforts to abandon FGM. UNFPA and partners are mobilizing health professionals to eliminate FGM, whatever the form and wherever it is practiced. This year’s International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation will be marked under the theme “Mobilization and Involvement of Health Personnel to Accelerate Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation.”

UNFPA and UNICEF jointly lead the largest global programme to accelerate the abandonment of female genital mutilation. Learn more here and here.


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