Human Rights Council 47th Session.
High-level panel discussion on the multisectoral prevention of and response, including the global response, to female genital mutilation (HRC res. 44/16)
Statement delivered by Ambassador Tine Mørch Smith, Permanent Representative of Norway on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries
(Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden)
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23 June 2021
Madam President, Excellencies, distinguished colleagues.
I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries ; Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden and my own country Norway.
We welcome this important – and timely – panel discussion.
A little over a year ago, the number of girls subjected to Female Genital Mutilation, was decreasing. One year later, we fear that achieving the SDGs by 2030, including the elimination of FGM, is much less realistic.
Covid-19 reinforces existing inequalities. Violence and harmful practices against women and girls are increasing. Because of the pandemic, there may be 2 million additional cases of female genital mutilation towards 2030.
FGM is an extreme form of SGBV and must be averted. To eliminate FGM we must use a wide range of interventions; from legislation, policies, change of norms, access to essential health services and education, [including comprehensive sexuality education,] and not least broad and general measures for gender equality and SRHR.
2021 should be an opportunity to unite for action and to increase the resources and investments needed to see a complete end to FGM by 2030.
We, the Nordic and Baltic countries are committed to continue to work against FGM, one of the most extreme forms of violence against women and girls, and a gross violation of their human rights.