Britain’s most prominent Muslim organisation today announced a new drive to tell its followers that female genital mutilation is contrary to Islam and should be shunned to save girls from serious damage to their health.
The Muslim Council of Britain said that it would distribute leaflets in mosques and community centres across the country as it threw its support behind the campaign to end the barbaric practice.
It said that it was “not true” that mutilation was a Muslim requirement and that instead one of the “basic principles” of Islam was that followers should not harm themselves or others.
It added that FGM was bringing Islam “into disrepute” and could cause severe pain, bleeding, problems in pregnancy and even death, as well leaving some victims with lasting pyschological problems.
Announcing today’s move, which will be welcomed by campaigners as a major breakthrough in the fight against FGM, Dr Shuja Shafi, the secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, said that the leaflet would be displayed at more than 500 mosques and community centres nationwide.
He added: “We at the MCB are pleased to address this very important issue of female genital mutilation. Working closely together we can end this practice and ensure it is no longer linked to the religion of Islam or the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad.”
Dr Soheir Elneil, the chairwoman of the African women’s campaign group Forward, which helped to prepare the leaflet, said the publication was an important step forward in the battle to protect girls.
“This is the first time such a publication has been achieved with the full cooperation and support of the relevant parties, and we hope all those working in FGM will find it a helpful tool in the work that they do.
“It states that FGM is non-Islamic and is against the teachings of Islam, that it is putting the health of women and girls at risk, and informs the reader of the legal implications in the UK of carrying out the practice.”
The new leaflet states: “FGM is not an Islamic requirement. There is no reference to it in the Holy Qu’ran that states girls must be circumcised. Nor is there any authentic reference to this in the Sunnah, the sayings or traditions of our Prophet. FGM is bringing the religion of Islam into disrepute.”
The document also warns that there is “an increasingly high risk of being prosecuted” for carrying out mutilation, which has been illegal in this country since 1985, and that perpetrators face up to 14 years in prison.
Today’s announcement follows a Home Office summit yesterday at which other religious organisations, including the Shia al-Khoei Foundation and the Muslim Women’s Network UK, announced their support for a government declaration against FGM to be published next month.
via – http://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/the-muslim-council-of-britain-barbaric-practice-of-fgm-is-unislamic-9551258.html