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Beyond the scars: personal stories of survivors of FGM in Somalia

Despite the widespread efforts to combat the FGM in Somalia, it is still a popular practice across the country. In Somalia, male circumcision is known to be a religious duty, but female circumcision is considered a cultural practice.

There is widespread misinformation about girls who are uncircumcised. This includes stereotypes, one of the most common ones being that uncircumcised girls have uncontrollable sexual desires and are therefore likely to commit immoral sexual acts.

That is primarily why, in Somalia, most families ensure their daughters undergo inhumane circumcision, a procedure that totally blocks the entire vagina, leaving a small opening to pass urine. The blockage remains in place until the girl is ready to get married, which is when she is taken to a doctor who opens the blocked parts.