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Female circumcision, AIDS discrimination to be monitored - Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.
UN Chronicle. 1990 Jun; 27(2): p..The eradication of female circumcision and avoidance of discrimination against women victims of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) were the subjects of two general recommendations adopted at the ninth annual session of States Parties to the 1979 Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. The 100 States Parties were asked to report to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women-the 23-member body which monitors compliance with the instrument-on measures taken to eliminate female circumcision which, it stated, has "serious health and other consequences for women and children". (excerpt)
Plan of action for the eradication of harmful traditional practices affecting the health of women and children in Africa.
[Unpublished] 1987. 14 p.The traditional and harmful practices such as early marriage and pregnancy, female circumcision, nutritional taboos, inadequate child spacing, and unprotected delivery continue to be the reality for women in many African nations. These harmful traditional practices frequently result in permanent physical, psychological, and emotional changes for women, at times even death, yet little progress has been realized in abolishing these practices. At the Regional Seminar of the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children in Africa, held in Ethiopia during April 1987, guidelines were drawn by which national governments and local bodies along with international and regional organizations might take action to protect women from these unnecessary hazardous traditional practices. These guidelines constitute this "Plan of Action for the Eradication of Harmful Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children in Africa." The plan should be implemented within a decade. These guidelines include both shortterm and longterm strategies. Actions to be taken in terms of the organizational machinery are outlined, covering both the national and regional levels and including special support and the use of the mass media. Guidelines are included for action to be taken in regard to childhood marriage and early pregnancy. These cover the areas of education -- both formal and nonformal -- measures to improve socioeconomic status and health, and enacting laws against childhood marriage and rape. In the area of female circumcision, the short term goal is to create awareness of the adverse medical, psychological, social and economic implications of female circumcision. The time frame for this goal is 24 months. The longterm goal is to eradicate female circumcision by 2000 and to restore dignity and respect to women and to raise their status in society. Also outlined are actions to be taken in terms of food prohibitions which affect mostly women and children, child spacing and delivery practices, and legislative and administrative measures. Women in the African region have a critical role to play both in the development of their countries and in the solution of problems arising from the practice of harmful traditions.
Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Institute for Development Training, 1986. 42,  p. (Training Course in Women's Health Module 5)Female circumcision encompasses a variety of surgical procedures performed on female children in Africa and the Middle East. Although female circumcision is a traditional practice, it is also a health issue because of its severe physical and psychological consequences. This women's health module seeks to provide health practitioners with information on recognizing the immediate and longterm consequences of female circumcision and to suggest ways of counteracting this practice. The module includes a pre-test and post-test and chapters on the following topics: types of female circumcision operations, immediate health effects of the practice, longterm consequences for general health, the effects of excision and infibulation on marriage and childbirth, health consequences of re-infibulation, and health education strategies. The module is self-instructional, allowing the student to learn at his or her own pace. An appended statement by the World Health Organization (WHO) states that WHO has consistently and unequivocally advised that female circumcision should not be practiced by any health professionals in any setting.
In: Female circumcision: strategies to bring about change. Proceedings of the International Seminar on Female Circumcision, 13-16 June 1988, Mogadisho, Somalia, [compiled by] Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo [and] Somali Women's Democratic Organization. Rome, Italy, Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo, 1989. 111-5.The International Labor Organization (ILO) Training Center in Turin, Italy, is a specialized UN Agency created in 1963 by the ILO and the Italian Government to train for development. More than 33,000 participants have studied at the center. The center also designs and develops multimedia training material, often in collaboration with other institutions. In past years, the center has made a significant effort to contribute to the promotion of women's participation in the development process. The ILO Turin Center has helped the Associazione Italiana Donne per lo Sviluppo (AIDOS) and the Somali Women's Democratic Organization (SWDO) in their campaign to eradicate infibulation in Somalia by structuring and editing project training materials. The training is designed to strike a balance between structured learning and guided, yet independent, discovery together with the acquisition of knowledge.
BMJ. British Medical Journal. 1993 Aug 21; 307(6902):460.Female genital mutilation, also misleadingly known as female circumcision, is usually performed on girls ranging in from 1 week to puberty. Immediate physical complications include severe pain, shock, infection, bleeding, acute urinary infection, tetanus, and death. Longterm problems include chronic pain, difficulties with micturition and menstruation, pelvic infection leading to infertility, and prolonged and obstructed labor during childbirth. An estimated 80 million girls and women have undergone female genital mutilation. In Britain alone an estimated 10,000 girls are currently at risk. Religious, cultural, medical, and moral grounds rationalize the custom which is practiced primarily in sub-Saharan Africa, the Arab world, Malaysia, Indonesia, and among migrant populations in Western countries. According to WHO it is correlated with poverty, illiteracy, and the low status of women. Women who escape mutilation are not sought in marriage. WHO, the UN Population Fund, the UN Children's Fund, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child have issued declarations on the eradication of female genital mutilation. In Britain, local authorities have intervened to prevent parents from mutilating their daughters. In 1984, the Inter-African Committee Against Harmful Traditional Practices Affecting Women and Children was established to work toward eliminating female genital mutilation and other damaging customs. National committees in 26 African countries coordinate projects run by local people using theater, dance, music, and storytelling for communication. In Australia, Canada, Europe, and the US women have organized to prevent the practice among vulnerable migrants and refugees.
East African Medical Journal. 1992 Sep; 69(9):477-8.Female circumcision detracts from physical, emotional, and social health in Africa were more than 2 hundred million women and girls have been subjected to it. Female circumcision is performed in infancy among the Yoruba of Western Nigeria, close to puberty among some Kikuyu of Kenya, and even later in some Western African tribes. Milder procedures are commonly encountered in Africa including Kenya, but in Somalia and Sudan infibulation is the circumcision of choice. Vaginal examination is impossible in such women. The resultant genital mutilation and complications include shock from hemorrhage and pain and injury to adjacent structures. Local infection is common and may be accompanied by recurrent urinary tract infection, pelvic inflammatory disease, septicemia, tetanus, and possibly transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus. Long term complications of infibulation include poor urine flow and cysts. Acquired gynatresia may result in hematocolpos, dyspareunia, and even apareunia with associated infertility. Circumcising women in a health facility with anesthesia and antibiotics serves to institutionalize circumcision of women and to introduce a monetary incentive. UN Commission on Human Rights has focused on the issue of human dignity and freedom from degradation that is the right of every female. An Inter-Africa Committee on Traditional practices affecting the health of women and children was formed following a 1979 WHO seminar held in Sudan. Legal decrees and presidential censure in Kenya and Senegal have played a limited role in halting this practice, as have youth organizations. Christian evangelization has made a major impact in Kenya with support for the education of women.