Event: How can Europe act to end female genital mutilation
(Brussels, 20 February 2013) In the light of the European Commission’s recent commitment to prevent female genital mutilation, Amnesty International’s END FGM European Campaign is devoting a day (27 February) to exploring practical ways of ending this human rights violation. It will unveil four artistic creations which envisage Europe, once women and girls are finally free from the clutches of this harmful practice.
The European Parliament will host a seminar which brings together representatives of national and EU institutions and civil society organisations to discuss different countries’ experiences and devise tangible measures for the EU to take to end FGM and protect the estimated 180,000 girls who are at risk from the practice each year.
Isabelle Durant, Vice President of the European Parliament, who is hosting the seminar, says: “The European Parliament has repeatedly called on member states and the Commission to act against this human rights violation. The UN resolution on FGM and the Commission’s plans for action give us an impetus to develop a vision for Europe to protect women and girls. The European Parliament would support a vision that is ambitious, long-term and actively engages with affected communities.”
Following the seminar, Amnesty International’s END FGM European Campaign will host a gala at Bozar, Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. Four creations will be unveiled by international artists and designers who have used 8,000 paper rose petals bearing signatures from supporters throughout Europe. Each work calls on Europe to act. This celebration will be accompanied by reflections from women who have suffered FGM and are now community activists in Europe.
The artists and designers who will unveil their creations at Bozar are Adriana Bertini (Brazil), Ilaria Venturini Fendi (Italy) and Nayia Evangelou (Cyprus). The walking lips sculpture (preview photograph above) by Walter Van Beirendonck (Belgium) will be unveiled in his absence. Photograph copyright: Amnesty International
Renowned Malian singer Rokia Traoré, who is performing at the gala is convinced FGM can end: “A true change of mind will require women’s ability to open to change. This change will begin with education of girls.”
For bios of all the artists, see: http://www.endfgm.eu/content/assets/Art_for_Action_Artists_Bio.pdf
Practical details: 27 February 2013
10.00am – 1.00pm: Seminar ‘Towards European Action to End Female Genital Mutilation’– European Parliament, Brussels (Room A3G3, ASP entrance) Programme and registration details here: http://bit.ly/YQX8aL
6.00 – 8.00pm: Art for Action Gala – Bozar, rue Baron Horta 11, Brussels (E-mail: [email protected] or call +32 (0) 2 548 2776 for an invitation)
To arrange interviews, please contact:
Prerna Humpal, Media and Networks Officer
END FGM European Campaign
Amnesty International European Institutions Office
T: +32 2 548 27 76