A new petition is calling on the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Physician Specialities to revoke the licenses of two Michigan doctors who performed female genital mutilation on over 100 young girls.
The petition, launched by Care2, follows a ruling from a federal judge last week which dismissed criminal charges against two Michigan doctors saying that Congress does not have the authority to make female genital mutilation (FGM) illegal — the decision should be left up to individual states.
“Girls are suffering and dying all across the globe from this horrible practice meant to stifle their sexuality”, the Care2 petition reads. “It’s up to us to change that and while this important issue continues to move through the court system, we must call on other institutions to stand against it.”
The two doctors at the center of the petition–Dr. Jumana Nagarwala and Dr. Fakhruddin Attar–were arrested by federal authorities in 2017 for cutting the genitalia of young girls in a Detroit clinic.
Two Minnesota girls approximately 7-years old were the main focus of the case. Both girls were taken to the clinic in Michigan by their mothers for the illegal procedure. The exact number of victims is unclear — prosecutors believe more than 100 girls could have visited the clinic for the female genital cutting procedure during a 12-year period.
“These girls have a painful procedure that they don’t need which carries a lot of risks and most of the time they aren’t even told what’s happening at the time or ever,” Care2 states. “One girl said she couldn’t even walk after the procedure. But ultimately, the parents of these girls told them not to talk about the procedure.”
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), female genital mutilation is identified as “procedures that intentionally alter or cause injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.” The surgical procedure, according to WHO, is a violation of human rights for girls and women, and it has been estimated that more than 200 million females have been cut in countries where the practice is still prevalent.
To view the petition, click here.