Nope, you didn’t read that wrong. Right here in the good’ol USA a doctor in Michigan has been charged with carrying out female genital mutilation on young girls. This is believed to be the first prosecution of its kind in the US.
The “Doctor” in question, Jumana Nagarwala, is an ER physician. The “procedures” she performed were done on girls ranging from six to eight years old. The 44 year old doctor faces a sentence of up to life in prison if convicted of all the charges against her. The D.A. is alleging that she has been doing these for over a decade in an office located in Livonia, a suburb of Detriot.
Officials stated on Thursday that these charges are the first to ever be brought under the law since it’s passing in 1996.
“Female genital mutilation constitutes a particularly brutal form of violence against women and girls. It is also a serious federal felony in the United States,” acting US attorney Daniel Lemisch said in a statement. “The practice has no place in modern society and those who perform FGM on minors will be held accountable under federal law.”
One of the victims told investigators that she was made to go see the “doctor” — “to get the germs out of her”. WHAT?! She also stated that Nagarwala pinched her genitals and was given a pad to place in her underwear.
Jaha Dukureh, an Atlanta-based FGM survivor and leading campaigner against the practice, welcomed the prosecution, saying it “sets an example” and reminds the public of the ongoing problem.
“We don’t want to have to prosecute – we want to prevent,” Dukureh said. “This shouldn’t be happening. Not in the US, not anywhere.”