CAIRO (AP) — It’s been more than 60 years. But the scene is seared still into Kawthar Ali’s mind. The women pinned her down on a bed. She was maybe 5 1/2 or 6 years old. Holding her knees, they spread her legs open, her genitals exposed.
At the time, she didn’t fully understand what followed. But that day Ali joined the many Sudanese girls who had undergone female genital mutilation, a practice that involves partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons.
“It’s the one incident that has affected my life the most,” said Ali. “It feels shameful for people to expose your body and do this to you, like a rape.”
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