Cairo: A total of 92 percent of married Egyptian women have gone through female genital mutilation, according to the 2014 Egypt Demographic and Health Survey (EDHS,) Minister of Health Adel Adawy said in a Sunday conference.
He added that 50 percent of married women favor FGM, known as female circumcision in Egypt, while 30 percent of them believe it must be banned. FGM rate in rural areas reach 95 percent, compared to 8 percent in urban cities.
Egypt has the largest number of women who have been subjected to genital cutting in the world, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
The 2008 EDHS reported that 91.1 percent of women aged 15-49 experienced FGM, and that 74 percent of girls aged 15-17 experienced the practice, marking a reduction from previous surveys. The decline is expected to reach 45 percent among girls age 15-17 over 15 years.
The government passed an amendment to the child law in 2008 that bans the practice following several national initiatives aimed at confronting FGM.
The first application of the law only took place in January 2014, where a doctor who circumcised a 13-year-old girl was sentenced to two years in prison after the girl died of complications in 2013. The doctor had been acquitted in a previous ruling, but prosecutors appealed the sentence
Egypt’s penal code punishes people involved in practicing FGM with three months to two years in prison, or a fine between 1,000 EGP ($140) to 5,000 EGP.