Africa: Symposium for Religious Leaders on Female Genital Mutilation
The Abidjan symposium will draw about 30 religious leaders from English and French-speaking IAC focused countries in Africa.
Presentations by eminent scholars at the symposium will include background papers on various aspects of FGM, on relevant legal instruments to be followed by discussions.
The Inter-African Committee believes that to eliminate FGM, which is one form of violence against women and girls, there must a multi-dimensional approach that involves all stakeholders. As there are opinions and beliefs that FGM is sanctioned by religion, Muslims and Christian leaders would at the symposium expound how the practice has no place in both religions.
Symposium for Legislators
To date, only 9 out of the 28 countries with FGM prevalence have signed and ratified the Maputo Protocol. 16 countries have national legislation against FGM, many of which are incomplete. Thus, IAC wants to sensitize and train legislators on the importance of the ratification of the Maputo Protocol, as well as on the contents of national laws. Moreover, IAC wants to train them on how to implement and follow-up these laws.
During the workshop, Media will be trained in the importance of reporting on FGM, harmful traditional practices in general and Human Rights and how to bring this message across. Strong media messages can mobilize communities and pressurize governments, thus it is a strong tool to accelerate the elimination of FGM.
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