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Each year, International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation is observed to raise awareness about this practice. Female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) is a harmful practice and it violates the human rights of girls and women.

Each year, more than 3 million girls are at risk of FGM/C, and an estimated 140 million girls and women are affected. FGM/C refers to the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injuries to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that female genital mutilation has no known health benefits and that it is in fact associated with short- and long-term risks to a girl’s physical, mental and sexual health and well-being. UNFPA is working to eliminate FGM/C.

This year, WHO if focusing on the troubling trend of health-care providers increasingly being the ones performing female genital mutilation, and thereby contributing to the legitimization and maintenance of the practice.