Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Iran

Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting is the practice of cutting the female genital, or female genital mutilation. FGM is a very ancient ritual that is still practised today, despite the violation of women’s sexual rights in all forms.

United Nations considers FGM as one of the examples of violence against women that with the sexual mutilation of women in childhood, it creates unfortunate consequences for the entire life of the person with subsequent social costs.

One of the purposes of FGM is to reduce a woman’s sexual desire, and in some regions, it is done for a variety of reasons, including incorrect traditional and cultural practices or religious reasons. Of course, this issue is not directly mentioned in any religion, nor can it be justified by religion.

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FAQ About Female Genital Mutilation

  • What are the side effects and harms of FGM? Common complications in the early days of female genital mutilation include severe pain, bleeding, inflammation of vaginal tissues, fever, infection, difficulty passing urine, psychological problems, and fear of death. Long-term consequences of female genital mutilation include urinary problems (painful urination and frequent urinary tract infection), vaginal problems (vaginal discharge, itching, bacterial vaginitis, and other chronic infections), menstrual problems (painful menstruation and difficulty in excreting menstrual blood), scar tissue and colloidal sexual problems (pain during intercourse, decreased sexual satisfaction), increased risks and consequences of childbirth (toughening of childbirth, heavy bleeding, cesarean surgery), increased infant mortality.
  • What is the rate of FGM in the world? Official UN reports indicate that about 130 million women and girls worldwide have been victims of one of the four types of FGM, adding about two million girls each year. This practice is currently common in twenty-nine countries and is most prevalent in western, eastern, and northern parts of Africa and some regions of the Middle East and Asia. It is also practiced among some immigrant groups living in Europe, North America, and Australia.
  • What is the rate of FGM in Iran? Female Genital Mutilation or cutting was prevalent in the south and west regions of Iran varying from 40% to 85%
  • Why do Iranians circumcise? Research from some years ago  has highlighted prevalence of Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) in remote villages within Kurdish populated regions of Iran, specifically in some villages of West Azerbaijan, Kurdistan, Kermanshah, and Hormozgan provinces. Although there has been a decline in FGM/C rates in recent years, however it continues to impact some girls and women in these areas.