Human Rights Committee to forgo asking for opinion on FGM

Human Rights and Gender Committee Chairperson Jeehan Mahmood (L) and member Rozaina Adam (R) | Photo: Majlis

The Human Rights and Gender Committee, today, decided to forgo asking the opinion of Islamic Ministry and other authorities on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

The Committee also decided to monitor the preparations by Attorney General’s Office to criminalize FGM in the Maldives.

The Parliamentary Committee on Tuesday decided to get the opinion of the Islamic Ministry and other authorities following Dr. Iyaz’s support for female genital mutilation amid public calls to criminalize the human rights violation.

A bill was submitted to the Parliament’s Human Rights and Gender Committee today against a lecturer at Maldives National University (MNU), Dr. Mohamed Iyaz for encouraging FGM.

The case was submitted by Parliament Member for Galolhu Dhekunu Constituency, Meekail Ahmed Naseem to the Parliament’s Human Rights and Gender Committee, regarding a tweet by Dr. Mohamed Iyaz featuring an article on “Medical benefits of female circumcision” and encouraging the Female Genital Mutilation”. MP Meekail stated that Dr. Mohamed Iyaz being an Assistant Professor of MNU and encouraging harmful practices for women is a danger for the women of Maldives, and it is an obstruction to the safety of women’s rights

During the Human Rights Committee meeting on Tuesday, MP Rozaina Adam said that it would be better to get the opinion of the Islamic Ministry on female genital mutilation so that they can come to a decision on the debate. Other members of the committee added go MP Rozaina’s request.

Following this, Deputy Speaker of the Parliament Eva Abdullah said that this case is not something that needs further opinions and that their focus must be to acknowledge the current efforts to stop FGM and further support those works.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injuries to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. This practice has no health benefits for girls and women. It is recognized internationally as a violation of the human rights of girls and women and the World Health Organization (WHO) is strongly urges health care providers to not perform FGM.