In its 44th session, the UN Human Rights Council has passed a strong resolution on the ‘Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation’ (FGM). Submitted by Burkina Faso on behalf of the group of African States, the resolution calls upon all governments to take “comprehensive, multisectoral and rights-based measures to prevent and eliminate female genital mutilation”.
The resolution also:
- Recognizes that the COVID-19 crisis could drive international, regional and national efforts away from the prevention and elimination of FGM, which studies indicate could result in 2 million additional cases of FGM that could have been averted by 2030
- Expresses deep concern that despite increased national, regional and international efforts, FGM persists in “all parts of the world” and that “new forms, such as medicalization and cross-border practice, are emerging”
- Highlights that many countries lack accurate and reliable data on FGM
- Welcomes “the growing global consensus” on the need to take appropriate measures to prevent and eradicate FGM, which is a harmful practice cannot be justified on religious or cultural grounds
- Urges States to take a number of measures to prevent and eliminate FGM, including passing legislation against the practice, addressing root causes of gender equality, stopping the medicalization of FGM, ensuring effective remedies for women and girls, and investing sufficient resources to end the practice.
Equality Now calls upon all 92 countries where FGM is known to take place to take immediate action to prevent and eliminate FGM. As noted by the Human Rights Council resolution, a global response and accelerated efforts are needed to end FGM by 2030.