Female genital mutilation is an abhorrent tradition majorly practiced in some parts of Africa. It involves the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia.

The WHO considers this practice a violation of the human rights of girls and women. The practice has no health benefits, victims may experience severe bleeding, fistulas, cysts, infections, as well as complications in childbirth. In some cultures, they believe female genital mutilation helps reduce promiscuity in females.

In 2006, Amina Noor from North London took a 3-year-old British girl to Kenya where this horrific act was carried out on the little one.

The Beginning

In the UK’s first-ever conviction for female genital mutilation, a woman who brought a British girl to Kenya for the procedure has been sentenced to prison.

A 40-year-old woman named Amina Noor, who came to Britain from Somalia at 16, brought a three-year-old girl to a ‘clinic’ in a private house where the child underwent terrible mutilation while she stayed outside.

Noor later claimed she had no idea the baby was going to be mutilated. According to her, she believed the girl was only going to be injected or pierced in a procedure known as ‘Gudniin’ – which means circumcision in Arabic. She claimed she had no idea the child’s cli-toris had been removed in the procedure. According to her, the traditionalists who carried out the procedure had asked her to wait outside while they performed the act.

Medical professionals who checked the child discovered that her genitals had been badly mutilated, which would have resulted in a lot of blood loss and intense agony for the baby.

Amina Noor

The girl lived with this for years until she told a teacher about the state of her genitalia when she turned 16.

When law enforcement agents confronted Noor following the girl’s revelation, she pretended she had no recollection of the events, and could not remember the victim.

For participating in the genital mutilation of the British girl, Noor who is a mother of seven children was found guilty in October 2023 and has been sentenced to seven years in prison.

Noor is the second person to be convicted of a cr*ime relating to the genital mutilation of girls in the UK.

The other instance where someone was convicted for female genital mutilation was in 2019.

In 2019, a Ugandan woman from Walthamstow, east London, received an 11-year prison sentence for mutilating a three-year-old girl. This was the only other conviction under the FGM Act of 2003.

In August 2017, the woman, who was 37 and unnamed, had set up for the girl to be restrained and mutilated in a squalid flat in east London.

Noor stated in court that she had taken the girl to Kenya for the procedure because she was under societal duress. According to her statements, she was threatened with being “cursed” and ostracized by her people if the girl did not have the procedure.

To bring Noor to justice, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), the police, and the National C*rime Agency worked together to establish that Noor knew the exact procedure that the girl was going to receive in Kenya before she embarked on her journey.

Investigators confirmed that Noor was aware of and assisted in the c*rime.

The law on FGM

The UK has made female genital mutilation a c*rime since the enactment of the Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act 1985.

The 1985 Act was amended in 2003 and is now known as the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003. This new law makes assisting and taking a child abroad for the procedure an offense punishable by a jail term of up to 14 years.

According to available records, 94 percent of females of Somali descent living in Kenya had their genitals mutilated.

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