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Press Release: Minister Marks International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM with FORWARD Visit

Press Release: Minister Marks International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM with FORWARD Visit

DFID Minister Lynne Featherstone, will be visiting the FORWARD (Foundation for Women’s Health, Research & Development) office on Wednesday 6th February as part of the Government’s activities for the International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM.

The visit will be an opportunity for the Minister to learn more about FORWARD’s work with FGM affected communities in Britain and Africa, and to share further information about the Government’s commitments to tackling FGM internationally.

Naana Otoo-Oyortey, Executive Director, FORWARD, spoke about the visit and said: “We are very glad Lynne Featherstone MP will be coming to FORWARD as part of the Government’s Zero Tolerance Day actions. FGM continues to be a serious human rights breach, an act of violence affecting thousands of girls and women in Britain, and millions of women around the world.

Strong Government action and policy is essential to successfully combat FGM; so we look forward to speaking with the Minister from DFID and sharing information about our work at FORWARD.”

Over 20,000 girls in the UK are estimated to be at risk of FGM each year, and around 140 million girls and women worldwide are currently living with the consequences of FGM.

FGM comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

FORWARD is an African Diaspora women led UK campaign and support charity dedicated to advancing and safeguarding the sexual and reproductive health and rights of African girls and women.

For media enquiries please contact-

Rukayah Sarumi: [email protected] 020 8960 4000

Notes to Editors:

• FORWARD has been campaigning against FGM and other forms of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) affecting African women and girls for 27 years.

• FORWARD’s key areas of work are: female genital mutilation (FGM), child marriage and related rights abuses of girls and women.

• International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation is held annually on 6th February. It was first marked on 6th February 2003 by then Nigerian First Lady Stella Obasanjo and was then adopted by the UN Human Rights Sub Committee as an international day of awareness.

• FORWARD works in the UK, Europe and Africa to help change practices and policies that affect access, dignity and wellbeing. www.forwarduk.org.uk Twitter: @FORWARDUK

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