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International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation 2021 – February 6

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International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital MutilationThe United Nations(UN)’s International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation is annually observed across the globe on 6th February to heighten the efforts towards eliminating the process of Female Genital Mutilation(FGM). 

The theme of International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation 2021: “No Time for Global Inaction, Unite, Fund, and Act to End Female Genital Mutilation”.

The theme was launched by the United Nations Population Fund(UNFPA)-United Nations Children’s Fund(UNICEF) Joint Programme on the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation and the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices (IAC). 

Background:

The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/67/144 in 2012 and proclaimed the 6th February of every year as the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation.

Female Genital Mutilation(FGM):

i.Female Genital Mutilation includes all the procedures that involves altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons.

ii.FGM is internationally recognized as a violation of human rights, health and integrity of girls and women.

iii.The complications of FGM includes excessive bleeding, infection and it also affects the sexual and reproductive health and mental health of the girls and women.

iv.Around 200 million girls and women have been subjected to FGM in 30 countries of Africa, Middle East and Asia.

v.António Guterres Stated that Together, we can eliminate female genital mutilation by 2030.

Effects of COVID-19 on FGM:

i.The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively affected the girls and women across the globe, which resulted in the disruption of the Sustainable Development Goal(SDG) 5.3: Eliminate forced marriages and genital mutilation.

ii.The UNFPA, estimates that around 2 million girls are at the risk of undergoing FGM by 2030.

iii.To counter this the UN has been adapting interventions that ensures the integration of FGM in humanitarian and post crisis response, through the joint programme of UNFPA-UNICEF.

Efforts against FGM:

i.The UNFPA and UNICEF has been jointly leading the largest global programme to accelerate the elimination of FGM.

ii.The programme focuses on 17 countries in Africa and Middle East and it also supports the regional and global initiatives.

iii.The World Health Assembly passed the resolution WHA61.16 in 2008 on the elimination of FGM, highlighting the needs of action in sectors like health, education, finance, justice and women’s affairs.

About United Nations Population Fund(UNFPA):
Executive Director– Dr. Natalia Kanem
Headquarters– New York, USA