How isolated religious or ethnic communities or families can persuade a young person that Human Genital Mutilation is normal – even in a western society such as the UK.
“When Najma moved to England after fleeing Somalia to escape persecution from the Al-Shabaab terrorist organisation, she just assumed everyone in Britain underwent female genital mutilation (FGM). “I wondered if the girls here got stitched up,” she says. Najma underwent the procedure when she was 11 years old. “I was taken to the room that I shared with my mum, and asked to lie down, my face towards the sky. I was held by three women, one holding the upper part of my body, and two pulling my legs apart.”