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ISIS leader demands female genital mutilation of 2 million girls

A Jihadist leader associated with the militant Islamist group ISIS — the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham — has ordered that all women aged from 11 to 46 years in Iraq undergo female genital mutilation (FGM), according to a UN spokeswoman.

Mosul – The United Nations second-in-command in Iraq, Jacqueline Badcock, speaking from the Kurdish provincial capital of Irbil, told reporters during a videoconference organized in Geneva that Islamists in control of the Iraqi city of Mosul had issued a fatwa or edict asking all families around Iraq’s northern city of Mosul to circumcise daughters within the specified ages or face severe punishment.

Ms Badcock, the UN’s resident and humanitarian coordinator in Iraq, said ““The practice,” said Ms. Badcock, “is something very new for Iraq… and does need to be addressed.”

“This is not the will of Iraqi people, or the women of Iraq in these vulnerable areas covered by the terrorists,” she added.”

According to International Business Times, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of the self-declared Islamic State, ordered the female genital mutilation of 2 million Iraqi girls seeking to justify the fatwa as being in order to “distance them from debauchery and immorality.”

Al-Baghdadi is believed to have been born in Samarra, Iraq in 1971. According to his Wikipedia entry, he’s been named the Caliph — head of state and theocratic absolute monarch — of the self-proclaimed Islamic State located in western Iraq and north-eastern Syria. Reports suggest that Al-Baghdadi was an imam at around the time of the US-led 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Ahmed Obaydi, a spokesman of Mosul Police, told Kurdistan-based BasNews, ““Baghdadi’s decision to have all women circumcised is, as he claims, to prevent immorality and promote Islamic attitudes among Muslims. The decision was made by Baghdadi as a ‘gift’ for people in Mosul.””

But civil activist Asil Jamal, quoted by the same news outlet, was more forthright, commenting, ““When ISIS was first arriving in Mosul, people were warmly welcoming them, but as a result of ISIS’ horrendous wishes, especially forced female circumcision, it is becoming clear for people that these ISIS militants don’t know anything else except torture.””

FGM or the ritual cutting of girls’ and women’s’ genitalia is widely practised across large swathes of Africa, the Middle East and Asia. The practice has come in for strong criticism, not just from the United Nations, but also human rights and women’s rights groups.

In 2012, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling on all states to ban the practice but despite widespread condemnation, women in a number of countries have continued to suffer this barbaric practice.



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