It has taken a long time until European Governments have started to take the fight against FGM seriously. It has been known for years that Great Britain hs the highest FGM-rate in Europe. British NGOs estimate that over 100.000 girls and women in Great Britain are concerned or endangered by FGM and yearly 20.000 further girl who are endangered by the practice. Until now there was not one prosecution to bring the perpetrators on trial for the crime and make clear to the parents that this inhuman practice is not accepted in Great Britain. A new helpline has been installed for victims to call. To the surprise of the operator (NSPCC = National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) 41 calls from concerned and endangered girls have been received in the first week. The Crown Prosecution Service is now for the first time in history deliberating over four new criminal cases. A further fifteen files are now investigated by the police.
The german government has passed the first law against FGM in Germany. With a sentence up to 15 years in prison it is among the strictest in Europe. According to estimations there are between 30.000 and 50.000 girls and women concerned or endangered.
On the first of July there has been passed a law in Switzerland, which penalizes FGM, even if the crime is commited abroad. Perpetrators as well as parents who practice are threatened with up to ten years of imprisonment. Due to a special Swiss law the crime can also be punished if it is commited by foreigners in other countries. This law has up to now only been used in cases of very heavy crimes against children and youths.
Source: Sicht-Weiten, International Business Times, Standard