A CASE of female genital mutilation (FGM) is reported in England every 109 minutes, according to shocking official health figures released yesterday.
Some 2,421 cases of mutilation were reported from April to September last year — the latest six months of figures published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre.
Nimco Ali, founder of charity Daughters of Eve that works to protect girls and women from FGM, said mutilation used to be taboo but it’s finally being discussed.
Ms Ali was seven years old when she was cut during a holiday in Djibouti.
She said: “FGM is a brutal practice, but it is also a very simple one to end.
“If you stop one woman having FGM done to her then you break that link and prevent it being done to the next generation.
“I came from a family that was 100 per cent FGM and that has gone down to zero in a generation. It is something that can be ended.”
Discussions about FGM should be held in mandatory sex education classes in school, Ms Ali added.
Between July and September last year, 1,385 cases were reported including 758 in London.
There were 227 cases in the Midlands and east of England, 245 in the north of England and 155 in the south of England.
The figures include cases in which FGM recently happened and those in which women and girls were cut years ago but have only been able to now report it to health authorities.
Around 137,000 people in England and Wales have been cut, human rights organisation Equality Now estimated last year.
The new figures are “just the tip of the iceberg,” said spokesman Brendan Wynne ahead of the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM tomorrow.