Russia: New Report Finds Female Genital Mutilation Prevalent in Dagestan
Thursday, December 14, 2017 1:55 PM

The Russian Justice Initiative has issued a report entitled “Female Genital Mutilation of Girls in Dagestan (Russian Federation),” shedding light on the persistence of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) as a cultural and religious practice in remote regions of Dagestan in the Russian Federation. The report finds that many men and women in that region justify the continuation of the practice on religious and cultural grounds. They argue that the procedure is necessary to reduce divorce and “immoral” behavior by preventing sexual desire in women and girls before and during marriage. This is despite the fact that, as the report notes, “FGM is a serious infringement on the health of women and girls and is qualified as a form of violence against women, sexual discrimination, and violence against children.”

The findings of the report are based on interviews conducted with women who underwent FGM procedures as well as local experts on the subject in Dagestan. To bring an end to the practice of FGM in Dagestan, the report recommends new legislation banning FGM, information and awareness campaigns, education and training efforts, as well as religious education and a dialogue with religious leaders.

Compiled From: Antonova, Yu. A. and Siradzhudinova, S. V., Female Genital Mutilation of Girls in Dagestan (Russian Federation), Russian Justice Initiative (2017).