Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Female Circumcision Trial

Perfect story of two cultures meeting: African tradition of female circumcision meet American tradition of nasty divorces and custody battles. It's always the children who suffer ... Always.

Female circumcision trial may be first in U.S.
LAWRENCEVILLE, Georgia (AP) -- The trial of an Atlanta-area father accused of circumcising his 2-year-old daughter with scissors is focusing attention on an ancient African practice that experts say is slowly becoming more common in the U.S. as immigrant communities grow.
Khalid Adem, a 30-year-old immigrant from Ethiopia, is charged with aggravated battery and cruelty to children.
Human rights observers said they believe this is the first criminal case in the U.S. involving the 5,000-year-old practice.
. . .
Testifying on his own behalf Friday, Adem said he never circumcised his daughter or asked anyone else to do so. He said he grew up in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and considers the practice more prevalent in rural areas.
. . .
His lawyer, Mark Hill, acknowledged that Adem's daughter had been cut. But he implied that the family of Fortunate Adem, who immigrated from South Africa when she was 6, may have had the procedure done.
The Adems divorced in 2003, and Hill suggested that the couple's daughter was encouraged to testify against her father by her mother, who has full custody.
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Bismillāh al-Rahmān al-Rahīm