Discussion: Type IV FGM and other types of female genital alterations

The new discussion within this Community of Practice will deep-dive into the issue of type IV FGM and other types of female genital alterations. 

As we know, the World Health Organization classifies FGM in 4 main types and considers all types of FGM to be a violation of the human rights of girls and women. FGM type IV encompasses a range of procedures done to the female genitals that do not fall under the first 3 types (partial or total removal of the clitoral gland, excision of the labia minora or majora, and infibulation).

The definition for type IV was changed in the new typology, published in 2007, to be less detailed than the previous one (1995). Practices such as the introduction of corrosive substances and herbs into the vagina, as well as labia stretching were removed but are still practiced by numerous communities.

As usual, we have prepared a Thematic note for the members. This note gives information on the main types of FGM IV.

  • Pricking
  •  Genital piercing
  • Vaginal incisions, scraping, hymenotomy, including
    • Dangouria/Haabize, Angurya and Gishiri in Niger and Nigeria
    • « removal or warts » (southieutes) in Senegal  
    • Incisions to introduce herbs, South Africa 
  • Cauterization       

As well as other types of female genital alterations which are not currently included in the WHO typology:

  • Labia elongation, stretching or pullin
  • Vaginal drying
  • Aesthetical genital surgeries
  • Clitoris massaging

What are they ? Where & Why are they practiced? 
Why are some of them not considered as « FGM »?  Which are the consequences of these practices  on the lives of the women/girls who undergo them? 
Which are the controversies around some of these pra
ctices?

This list is not exhaustive, nor is the information given on each type (such as country/community practicing). 

We are counting on YOU to share more information ! 

The discussion will last a few weeks. Experts will share their experience and expertise of specific practices.

You can read our interview with Fatou Kebe, Senegalese sociologist on the so called « removal of warts » practiced in the Wolof communities of Senegal, here.

And see the video produced as part of the discussion : « Removal of sothieutes » in Senegal – a Female Genital Mutilation? »

Join the Community of Practice in order to participate in the discussion,
via this registration form

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