NIGER- Anti-FGM Priest Kidnapped

Clarion Project | Oct. 11, 2018

An anti-FGM (female genital mutilation) Catholic priest was kidnapped by suspected jihadi terrorists in Niger for educating women and girls against the brutal practice.

Local sources say Father Pierluigi Maccalli of the Society of African Missions was most likely taken across the border to Burkina Faso.

Maccalli was known for organizing meetings with local women to educate them about FGM, which, according to another priest based in Niger, “may be one of the reasons for the kidnapping, according to local sources.’’

FGM includes all procedures involving partial or complete removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

Most girls who have undergone FGM are cut between the ages of four and 12. Short-term complications can include hemorrhaging, pain, shock, and even death, while long-term complications include formation of cysts, problems with sexual intercourse and giving birth, chronic pelvic infection and sterility.

The trauma of FGM often lasts a lifetime and can cause depression and anxiety, among other psychological problems.