Circumcision results in prison

CIRCUMCISION RESULTS IN PRISON

According to the customs of her African ancestors, Teneng Jahate
was merely a dutiful mother.  But a French court, in a landmark
judgement, sentenced her to prison last week for arranging the
circumcision of her two eldest daughters.

Jahate, a Gambian living in France since 1983, was sentenced to
one year in prison, plus a four-year suspended term, for hiring a
midwife to circumcise the girls in 1987, when they were 1 and 2.

The procedure entails slicing off the clitoris and surrounding
tissue, and is performed without anesthesia.  Critics call it
genital mutilation and a way for men to curb a woman's sexual
pleasure.  French law classifies it as a form of child abuse so
severe that it could draw a maximum life sentence.

The sentence was a milestone in France's battle to stop the
practice among its large African immigrant population.

Female circumcision is practiced widely in countries such as
Somalia, Mali, Senegal, Sudan and Ivory Coast.

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From:
The Arizona Republic newspaper
Tuesday, January 12, 1993

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