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Hygieia
  1. Glenys Hughes
  1. ghughes@bmjgroup.com

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    FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION IN ITALY

    Not only does female genital mutilation (FGM) persist in parts of the world where it has been traditionally practised but it has spread to developed countries through immigration. Between an estimated 100 and 140 million women and girls worldwide have been subjected to FGM. An additional two million girls will undergo some form of FGM every year, despite the practice being increasingly prohibited by law. FGM can have varying degrees of invasiveness, but all forms raise health related concerns that can be of considerable physical or psychological severity. Medical practice prohibits FGM as a violation of a person’s fundamental rights to physical and mental integrity and to the health of women and girls. Last year Italy became the first European country to prohibit FGM, putting in place a set of measures to prevent and suppress the practice. The law provides for between 4 and 7 years’ imprisonment for practising clitoridectomy, excisions, infibulations, and other mutilations in the absence of therapeutic requirements. Different interventions are considered, starting with information campaigns, training health workers, providing a …

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