Eastern winds and a woman’s scolding begin with a storm and end with a soaking.
“When I look back on it, I feel genuine regret and compassion.”
Who: Enayat Abdelhanid
What: Midwife who has changed her opinion and is now opposed to genital mutilation.
“I used to circumcise up to twenty girls a day, and I was paid in money, tea and sugar. We used to cut out three parts. We held the girl down and she usually screamed. When I look back on it, I feel genuine regret and compassion.”
The thing that changed Enayat’s mind was the lecture by a doctor from Cairo about the risks to women posed by circumcision. That it can lead to chronic infections, a damaged urethra, infertility and that she can lose her ability for sexual pleasure.
“I thank God that I have found out more and become wiser!”
Maternal deaths: 43 deaths per l00,000 births.
Number of children/woman: 2.97 (estimate for 2011)
Abortion legislation: Abortion is not legal. It is only allowed if the mother’s life is at risk. Very restrictive application.
Law against rape within marriage: No
Violence against women in close relationships: Two women are raped every hour. Only 12 per cent of 2,500 incidents of sexual harassment were reported to the police.