Scandinavia Battles Genital Mutilation

African, Middle Eastern immigrants arrested after mutilations abroad
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 19, 2009 5:55 PM CDT
Salimata Knight, a survivor from Genital Mutilation is seen on March 3, 2004 in London.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Scandinavian countries are hitting perpetrators of genital mutilation with heavy fines and prison sentences, even when the act is committed in other countries, Global Post reports.
African and Middle Eastern immigrants who take their daughters abroad for genital mutilations—which are considered normal and even necessary in some cultures—are coming home to handcuffs in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden.

Some Africans protect the practice, saying it encourages cleanliness, curbs promiscuity, and guarantees a girl's virginity. But Scandinavian officials are publicly attacking the practice as a crime against women. The Danes have even made preemptive arrests, nabbing parents who were allegedly planning to mutilate their daughter in Sudan. “Female genital cutting is a serious assault and contradicts basic human rights,” said one official.