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Court acts to save girls from mutilation

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emad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 10:12 AM
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Court acts to save girls from mutilation
Ben Sills in Granada
Saturday May 15, 2004
The Guardian


The Spanish judiciary was yesterday embroiled in a simmering row with Gambia over the best way to protect girls from circumcision after a court confiscated the passports of three Gambian girls to stop them being repatriated for surgery.

Ruling that the three were in real danger of genital mutilation, Judge Eva Platero called for their passports to be withheld until they are 18 and ordered twice-yearly gynaecological examinations for them.

Gambia's envoy to Spain, Juan Antonio del Moral, called the decision "repressive" and an anomaly in a democracy.

"While I welcome efforts to eradicate this practice, it's important to recognise that the restrictions on travel and the examination regime that have been imposed on these girls are both intrusive and repressive," he said. "It's important to strike a balance between harm prevention and restriction of liberties. In this case I believe the judge has not managed to do that."
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