Keren, 07 February 2024 – The International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) was commemorated at the national level in the Halib-Mentel administrative area, Elaberet sub-zone, on 6 February.
Mr. Meharena Tekleab, the managing director in the sub-zone, emphasized that female genital mutilation not only involves the physical alteration of a female’s body but also constitutes a violation of basic female rights, prohibited by the proclamation of the Government of Eritrea No. 158/2007. Mr. Meharena also stated that the Elaberet sub-zone is nearing the proclamation of freedom from the practice of female genital mutilation.
Colonel Tesfatsion Girmay, Director General of Social Services in the Anseba Region, highlighted the health risks associated with FGM and noted that four sub-zones in the Anseba Region have declared themselves free from the practice, while others are actively working to achieve the same status.
Ms. Tekea Tesfamicael, President of the National Union of Eritrean Women, called for a concerted effort to eliminate harmful practices and secure the future of Eritrean women.
Mr. Abdullahi Yussuf, UNICEF Representative in Eritrea, acknowledged the encouraging progress made in Eritrea towards ending FGM and expressed readiness to support the efforts of the Eritrean Government to eliminate female genital mutilation and underage marriages.
Ambassador Abdella Musa, Governor of the Anseba Region, urged Eritrean women to take a leading role in the campaign against harmful practices.
The event featured cultural and artistic programs to mark the occasion.
Reports indicate that the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM was also observed in the Southern and Central regions.