Colombian tribe renounce female genital mutilation: Embera-Chami stop female circumcisions

 
Embera-Chami Colombian tribe abandons female circumcision
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Embera-Chami tribe abandons female circumcision

Members of the Embera-Chami community have reached a landmark decision. From now on, this indigenous group from the north-western part of Colombia will abandon the practice of female circumcision on its newly born girls forever.

After three years of reflecting on the issue, this indigenous community of 25,000 decided to definitively abandon a practice they once considered ancestral. This was eased by their discovery that it was in fact only a couple of centuries old, as an investigation they conducted at the suggestion of several United Nations agencies proved.

However, their success story illustrates what a long and difficult process is needed for a community to become aware of how the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM), which affects more than 100 million women in the world, violates women’s rights.
 
Andrés Bermúdez Liévano


© UNIFEM


Women in Focus Editor
03/04/2012
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