recently, on cnn, american-muslim scholar reza aslan said that fgm was an african problem. actually, that is not true. fgm is practiced in africa and asia, not just in africa. and it’s practically mostly in muslim communities.
indonesia was one of the examples reza used as an example of muslim women having “equal” rights. but in indonesia fgm is practiced. “khitanan massal,” as it’s called locally, and has been reported to have affected around 80% of women. last year, the muslim leadership in the country had officially ‘favored’ the practice (see: http://bit.ly/1ui3lKA )
turkey was another example used by reza as a place where female leadership is in place. however, fgm is also practiced in turkey… as in iraq… by the kurdish community, although not as common as in iraq. in 2011, the kurdish government in iraq outlawed the practice, but the communities still practice it (see: http://reut.rs/1CI4SfD )
fgm is also practiced in bahrain, jordan, kuwait, oman, qatar, saudi arabia, syria, and the united arab emirates. these are all muslim countries outside of africa. what they have in common is islam, because in islam … in the hadiths, which most muslims accept as a sacred text only second to the qur’an, fgm is accepted.
similarly, on the african continent… the two most dramatic fgm cases (somalia and egypt) are both muslim countries. and, finally, the countries used as an example, eritrea and ethiopia, have both large muslim populations-- 40% and 35%, respectively.
those of you interested in learning fgm’s place in islam, you can visit the wiki islam page (via; http://bit.ly/1CI56n2 ), where sahih/authentic hadiths talk about the practice.