Zero tolerance for female genital mutilation
MEPs will quiz the Commission on progress made towards eradicating female genital mutilation (FGM) in the EU, and protecting young girls against this violent practice, in a debate on Wednesday evening.
Parliament called on the Commission to come forward with joint action plans to end FGM in the EU in a February 2014 resolution. It says that any EU resident who has committed the crime of FGM should be prosecuted, even if the offence was committed outside the borders of the member state concerned, and that this “extraterritoriality” principle should be included in the criminal law provisions of all member states.
The Commission estimates that hundreds of thousands of women living in Europe have been subjected to genital mutilation and that thousands of girls are at risk. The largest groups of women and girls originating in countries where the practice of FGM is widespread now live in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Spain, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden and the UK.
Globally, at least 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone some form of FGM, according to UN estimates. If current trends continue, 15 million additional girls between ages 15 and 19 be subjected to it by 2030. FGM is mostly carried out on young girls sometime between infancy and age 15.
February 6 is the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation.
Procedure: Commission statement
Debate: Wednesday, 1 February