Among the things that Islamophobes usually accuse Islam of, it is the issue of female genital mutiliation (FGM) which is often cited as “evidence” that Islam “oppresses” women. Although the practice of FGM has no basis in either the Qur’an or the Sunnah, it is still widely found in mainly North African and South Asian nations, particularly due to local customs and tradition which are not found in Islam.
Today, 24 religious and national leaders from Mauritania have issued a fatwa forbidding FGM. This is a significant step as this shows that FGM is not permitted in Islam, unlike what the Islamophobes and anti-Islam haters would want their audience to believe.
Female Genital Mutilation Banned by Islamic Leaders in Mauritania
This week, 34 well-regarded Mauritanian religious and national leaders signed a fatwa, or Islamic law, banning female genital mutilation (FGM). The fatwa is considered a huge stride toward women’s rights in the Islam world.
Female genital mutilation, or genital cutting, is a form of female circumcision. It entails removing all or part of the external female genitalia, including the clitoris and labia.
It is often practiced on girls between the time they’re born and their early teen years. After the circumcision is complete, many experience severe bleeding, difficulty urinating, childbirth complications and, in some cases, death.
According to the World Health Organization, the procedure has no medical benefits.
Female circumcision is not a religion practice. However, it has become a “law by custom,” says Jacqueline Castledine in an article posted on the Mount Holyoke College website.
She states, “The practice has become important to Islam because it is associated with female sexual purity. FGM is intended by its practitioners to both control women’s sexual drives and also to cleanse women’s genitalia by removing the clitoris, which is seen as masculine, a female penis.”
The law was passed on Jan. 15, 2011, by 34 Mauritanian religious and national figures. It prohibits the practice of FGM within the country.
Continue reading the story here.