30 million girls risk genital mutilation



A Masai girl holds a protest sign during the anti-Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) run in Kilgoris, Kenya (Photo:AP)
More than 125 million girls and women alive today have undergone female genital mutilation, and 30 million more girls are at risk in the next decade, UNICEF said Monday.

Although genital cutting is on the decline, the practice remains “almost universal” in some countries, said the UN Children Fund’s report that spans 20 years of data across 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East.

The tradition involves removal of some or all of a female’s external genitalia. It can include cutting out the clitoris and sometimes sewing together the labia.

Laws are not enough to stop the practice entirely, and more people must speak out in order to eliminate it among certain ethnic groups and communities, the researchers said.

Social acceptance is the most commonly cited reason…

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At the End of the Day

The Slog

Why all babies are Royalty really

My granddaughter has decided that steamed courgettes are just so yesterday, which is worrying for her mum given that she only persuaded Lyla to like them about a week ago. Lyla’s method of making this clear is to throw the courgette slices all over the kitchen with enormous gusto. She has the same stubborn mule face after doing so that reminds me of her Mum at the same age. So the bolshie genes are intact.

Lyla’s diet is remarkably eclectic, in that it consists of three colours (green gunge, midbrown gunge and orange gunge) with additional variety provided by off-white milk and light yellow apple filling gunge for pudding. From time to time she eats chicken bits, but gives lamb the kitchen courgette treatment. Anyway, Katherine Duchess of Cambridgeshire has this all to look forward to – or rather, her bevvy of servants…

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You Call These Peace Talks?

Beyond the Cusp

Well, we all should have known better than to grab the given headlines and excitement over the word of United States Secretary of State John Kerry when he informed the world that he had made a huge breakthrough and that the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks were to resume in Washington in the coming weeks. As the confetti cleared and we focused on exactly what Secretary Kerry had given us and all the hoopla had died down so we could hear ourselves think the truth slowly congealed and the realization came that we were about to enter talks over whether or not to hold the talks. The reality is that all Secretary Kerry has to show for six months and six high-intensity, stop-the-presses pressure and first-class arm-twisting is that the Palestinian Authority’s Saeb Erekat and Israel’s Tzipi Livni and Yitzhak Molcho will meet in Washington in an effort to hammer out a…

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A Devine Look At America

PA Pundits - International

caruba_alan20080111By Alan Caruba ~American Symbols

For a few years I was a regular contributor to Conservative Battleline on the website of the American Conservative Union (ACU) Foundation, edited by a fellow I knew only as Don Devine. He was always unfailingly supportive and liked my commentaries.

What I didn’t know was that Don was Dr. Donald J. Devine, the author of eight books on aspects of political science and had served as President Ronald Reagan’s Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management where he helped cut 100,000 bureaucratic jobs and save more than $6 billion by reducing generous benefits.

If you think the federal government is too big, Don would surely agree. The Washington Post called him Ronald Reagan’s “terrible swift sword of the civil service” and The New York Times called him “the Grinch.” Both liberal newspapers were simply reflecting the progressive viewpoint that there is no such thing…

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