Home news Baby 'at risk of FGM' must stay in UK

Baby 'at risk of FGM' must stay in UK

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A mother has been banned from taking her child abroad, to avoid the risk of female genital mutilation (FGM).The British woman, in her 20s, converted to Islam after meeting the girl’s father in an Egyptian hotel, London’s High Court was told.The one-year-old was born in England and her mother planned to take her to Egypt regularly to visit relatives.But the judge said the “real risk” she would be subjected to FGM meant she must stay in the UK until she turns 16.The case was brought to court by Hertfordshire County Council after a health visitor grew concerned about the child’s welfare.Mrs Justice Russell ordered that the child’s passport be retained by the court until 2032 “to prevent onward travel to Egypt”.The father and his family insisted they had no intention of subjecting her to FGM.The court heard he viewed the procedure as part of “Egyptian culture and tradition” and believed it should be legalised and carried out in hospital.The judge concluded: “It is not intended that the girl should not be able to see her father or members of the paternal family and the court would encourage the father and his family to visit her in England.”Female genital mutilation is illegal in the UK and it is compulsory for family doctors, hospitals and mental health trusts to report any new cases in their patients.The practice – intentionally altering or injuring the female external genitalia for non-medical reasons – carries a sentence of up to 14 years in jail.
Source: BBC Beds