Indonesia: End government legitimization of female genital mutilation (FGM)
Equality Now has just issued an Action calling on the Government of Indonesia to repeal a 2010 Ministry of Health regulation legitimizing the practice of FGM and to enact and implement comprehensive legislation banning FGM.
In November 2010, the Indonesian Ministry of Health passed a regulation [No. 1636/MENKES/PER/XI/2010 regarding “Female Circumcision”] legitimizing the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) and authorizing medical professionals to perform it. Though this “medicalization” of FGM permits a procedure that is harmful to girls and women and represents a violation of the ethical code governing the professional conduct of nurses, midwives and other health care workers, efforts to overturn the legislation have been unsuccessful; human rights groups on the ground fear an increase in FGM due to this regulation.
FGM is a harmful traditional practice that affects up to 140 million women and girls around the world. All forms of the practice violate a range of their human rights, including the right to non-discrimination, to protection from physical and mental violence, to the highest, attainable standard of health, and, in the most extreme cases, to the right to life. FGM also constitutes torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. The World Health Organization (WHO), of which Indonesia is a Member State, has strongly urged health professionals not to practice any form of FGM.
Please join Equality Now and our partner Kalyanamitra in calling on the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection to live up to their domestic and international obligations by:
Repealing the 2010 Ministry of Health regulation legitimizing the practice of FGM
Enacting and implementing comprehensive legislation banning FGM with strong penalties for violators
Conducting public awareness-raising and education campaigns to change cultural perception and beliefs on FGM and acknowledging FGM as a human rights violation with harmful consequences
Also join us in calling upon the Indonesian Society of Obstetrics & Gynecology, the Indonesian National Nurses Association and the Indonesian Midwives Association to live up to their international obligations as members of the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), the International Council of Nurses (ICN) and the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) by:
Publicly condemning FGM in all its forms and its medicalization
Ensuring that strong measures are put into place to discipline Association members who practice FGM
Urging the government to repeal the 2010 regulation, working with them to enact a law banning FGM and promoting a comprehensive strategy and public education against the practice.