Sudan ratifies law criminalizing female genital mutilation
Sudan's justice ministry announced, the ruling body ratified a law banning the widespread practice of female genital mutilation, handing the movement for women's rights in the African country a long-sought victory.
The Sovereign Council passed a set of sweeping amendments to the country's criminal code, including one that criminalized the deep-rooted practice. The draft law had been approved by the transitional government that came to power last year following the ouster of longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir.
A U.N.-backed survey in 2014 estimated 87% of Sudanese women and girls between the ages of 15 and 49 have been subjected to the procedure. Most undergo an extreme form known as infibulation, which involves the removal and repositioning of the labia to narrow the vaginal opening.