Indonesia

U.N. pressures Indonesia to stop health workers performing FGM (Thomson Reuters)

8/12/2013 -- Thomson Reuters -- "U.N. pressures Indonesia to stop health workers performing FGM"; Efua Dorkenoo, advocacy director of Equality Now’s FGM programme, on the “medicalisation” of FGM.

Nairobi Office Director Faiza Mohamed on how moves to 'medicalize' FGM jeopardise decades of work to eliminate it (WNN)

1/18/2013 -- Women News Network -- "Moves to medicalize female mutilation could destroy ‘Stop FGM’ advocacy"; Nairobi Office Director Faiza Mohamed on how moves to 'medicalize' FGM jeopardise decades of work to eliminate it entirely. 

The importance of integrating human rights issues into international policy-making (TrustLaw)

11/12/2012 -- TrustLaw -- "The Word on Women - Why it is important to integrate human rights into international policy-making"  Advocacy Director, FGM Program Efua Dorkenoo on integrating human rights issues - particularly those which affect women and girls such as FGM - into policies relating to international trade and financial aid.

Indonesia: End government legitimization of female genital mutilation (FGM)

Action Number: 
43.1
Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2012 Sep 12
Update Date: 
2013 Jun 25
Update: 

8 AUGUST 2013 UPDATE: We are pleased to report that following Equality Now and Kalyanamitra’s joint submission to the Human Rights Committee (HRC), the Committee expressed concern about Indonesia’s passage of a regulation legitimizing FGM in their concluding comments. The HRC has called on the Indonesian government to repeal the regulation and to “enact a law that prohibits any form of FGM and ensure that it provides adequate penalties that reflect the gravity of this offence.” They went on to urge the government to “make efforts to prevent and eradicate harmful traditional practices including FGM, by strengthening its awareness-raising and education programmes.” (CCPR/C/IDN/CO/1, Advance unedited version)  We hope that the Indonesian government will adhere to the Committee’s recommendations and take immediate steps to protect Indonesian women and girls from this violation of their human rights.


25 JUNE 2013 UPDATE: Indonesia will be coming up for review in July 2013 at the 108th session of the Human Rights Committee which monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) by State parties. Equality Now and our Indonesian partner Kalyanamitra have sent a joint submission to bring the Committee's attention to the ongoing government legitimization of FGM in Indonesia. We continue to call on the government of Indonesia to repeal the 2010 Ministry of Health regulation legitimizing the practice of FGM and to enact and implement comprehensive legislation banning FGM with strong penalties for violators.


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What You Can Do: 

>> TAKE ACTION NOW! Please join Equality Now and our partner Kalyanamitra in calling on the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection to live up to their domestic and international obligations by:

  • Repealing the 2010 Ministry of Health regulation legitimizing the practice of FGM
  • Enacting and implementing comprehensive legislation banning FGM with strong penalties for violators
  • Conducting public awareness-raising and education campaigns to change cultural perception and beliefs on FGM and acknowledging FGM as a human rights violation with harmful consequences

Also join us in calling upon the Indonesian Society of Obstetrics & Gynecology, the Indonesian National Nurses Association and the Indonesian Midwives Association to live up to their international obligations as members of FIGO, ICN and ICM by:

  • Publicly condemning FGM in all its forms and its medicalization
  • Ensuring that strong measures are put into place to discipline Association  members  who practice FGM
  •  Urging the government to repeal the 2010 regulation, working with them to enact a law banning FGM and promoting a comprehensive strategy and public education against the practice

>> TAKE ACTION NOW!

Letters should go to:

Dr. Nafsiah Mboi, SpA, MPH
Minister, Health Ministry of Indonesia

Jl H.R.Rasuna Said Blok X.5 Kav. 4-9, Blok A, 2ndFloor, Kuningan 
Jakarta, Indonesia, Post Code: 12950
Tel:  +62-21-520-1590
Fax: +62-21-520-1591
Email: info@depkes.go.id

Linda Amalia Sari, S.IP
Minister, Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection of Indonesia

Jalan Medan Merdeka Barat No. 15
Jakarta, Indonesia, Post Code: 10110
Tel:  +62-21-384-2638
        +62-21-380-5563
Fax: +62-21-380-5562
        +62-21-380-5559
Email: danty_anwar@yahoo.co.uk

Dr. Nurdadi Saleh
President
Perkumpulan Obstetri Dan Ginekologi Indonesia
(Indonesian Society of Obstetrics & Gynecology)

Jalan Taman Kimia No. 10
Central Jakarta
Indonesia
Tel.: +62-21-314-3684
Fax: +62-21-391-0135
Email: pogi@indo.net.id

Mrs. Dewi Irawati
Indonesian National Nurses Association
Jalan Jaya Mandala No.15
Patra Kuningan
Jakarta 12870
Indonesia
Tel:  +62-21-831-5069
Fax: +62-21-831-5070
Email: dppppni@gmail.com

Dr. Harni Koesno
President
Indonesian Midwives Association - IMA

(Ikatan Bidan Indonesia)
Jalan Johar Baru V/D13
10560 Jakarta Pusat
Indonesia
Tel:   +62-21-424-4789
         +62-21-422-6043
Fax:  +62-21-424-4214
Email: ppibi@cbn.net.id

With copies to:

Dr. Prijo Sidipratomo
Chairman, Indonesian Medical Association

Jalan Dr. Samratulangi No. 29, Menteng
Jakarta, Indonesia
Post Code:10350
Fax: +62-21-390-0473
Email: pbidi@idola.net.id; pbidi@idionline.org

Letters: 

Letter to Government Officials:

Dear [   ]:

I am deeply concerned about the November 2010 Ministry of Health regulation which legitimizes the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) and authorizes medical professionals to perform it. “Medicalization” of FGM permits a procedure that is harmful to girls and women. It also violates the ethical code governing the professional conduct of doctors, nurses, midwives and other health care workers. Several efforts have been made to have this regulation overturned, but to no avail. I share the concerns of human rights groups on the ground that medicalization of any form of FGM legitimizes the practice thus rendering it impossible to stop the practice.

According to the World Health Organization, of which Indonesia is a member state, FGM refers to all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. The WHO has strongly urged health professionals not to practice any form of FGM. FGM is classified by the WHO into four major types:

Type I: Clitoridectomy: partial or total removal of the clitoris (a small, sensitive and erectile part of the female genitals that includes the glans of the clitoris) and, in very rare cases, only the prepuce (the fold of skin surrounding the clitoris).
Type II: Excision: partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora, with or without excision of the labia majora (the labia are "the lips" that surround the vagina).
Type III: Infibulation: narrowing of the vaginal opening through the creation of a covering seal. The seal is formed by cutting and repositioning the inner, or outer, labia, with or without removal of the clitoris.
Type IV: Other: all other harmful procedures to the female genitalia for non-medical purposes, e.g. pricking, piercing, incising, scraping and cauterizing the genital area.

FGM is a form of violence and discrimination against girls and women and is internationally recognized as a violation of their human rights. All forms of FGM violate a range of human rights of girls and women, including their right to sexual and bodily integrity, to non-discrimination, to protection from physical and mental violence and to the highest, attainable standard of health. FGM also constitutes cruel and degrading treatment of girls and women.

The Ministry of Health regulation runs counter to a number of Indonesian laws which include decrees enshrining international legal obligations such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) in the national legal framework.

I would like to urge you to ensure that Indonesia lives up to its domestic and international obligations by taking the following steps:

  • Repealing the 2010 Ministry of Health regulation legitimizing the practice of FGM
  • Enacting and implementing comprehensive legislation banning FGM with strong penalties for violators
  • Conducting public awareness-raising and education campaigns to change cultural perception and beliefs on FGM and acknowledging FGM as a human rights violation with harmful consequences

Yours sincerely,
 


Letter to Indonesian Medical groups (Ob/Gyns, Nurses and Midwives):

Dear [   ]:

I am deeply concerned about the November 2010 Ministry of Health regulation which legitimizes the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) and authorizes medical professionals to perform it. “Medicalization” of FGM permits a procedure that is harmful to girls and women. It is also a violation of the ethical code governing the professional conduct of Indonesian nurses, midwives, obstetricians and gynecologists and is contrary to the resolutions against FGM adopted by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), the International Council of Nurses (ICN) and the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) of which the health professional associations of Indonesia are members. Several efforts have been made to have this regulation overturned, but to no avail. I share in the concerns of human rights groups on the ground that medicalization of any form of FGM legitimizes the practice thus rendering it impossible to stop the practice.

According to the World Health Organization, of which Indonesia is a member state, FGM refers to all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. The WHO has strongly urged health professionals not to practice any form of FGM. FGM is classified by the WHO into four major types:

Type I: Clitoridectomy: partial or total removal of the clitoris (a small, sensitive and erectile part of the female genitals that includes the glans of the clitoris) and, in very rare cases, only the prepuce (the fold of skin surrounding the clitoris).
Type II: Excision: partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora, with or without excision of the labia majora (the labia are "the lips" that surround the vagina).
Type III: Infibulation: narrowing of the vaginal opening through the creation of a covering seal. The seal is formed by cutting and repositioning the inner, or outer, labia, with or without removal of the clitoris.
Type IV: Other: all other harmful procedures to the female genitalia for non-medical purposes, e.g. pricking, piercing, incising, scraping and cauterizing the genital area.

FGM is a form of violence and discrimination against girls and women and is internationally recognized as a violation of their human rights. All forms of FGM violate a range of human rights of girls and women, including their right to sexual and bodily integrity, to non-discrimination, to protection from physical and mental violence and to the highest, attainable standard of health. FGM also constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of girls and women.

The Ministry of Health regulation runs counter to a number of Indonesian laws which include decrees enshrining international legal obligations such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) in the national legal framework.

I urge your professional association to live up to its international obligations by:

  • Publicly condemning FGM in all its forms and its medicalization
  • Ensuring that strong measures are put into place to discipline health professional members of the association who practice FGM
  • Urging the government to repeal the 2010 regulation legitimizing the practice and working with them towards enactment of a law banning FGM and promotion of a comprehensive strategy and public education against the practice.

Yours sincerely,

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