Politicians have welcomed the first ever “landmark” conviction of female genital mutilation (FGM) in the UK.

The mother of a three-year-old girl from east London was the first to be found guilty of the crime on Friday February 1 after a trial which started at the Old Bailey on January 14.

The Ugandan woman, 37, and her Ghanaian partner, 43, both of Walthamstow, were accused of cutting their daughter over the 2017 summer bank holiday.

Navin Shah, the London Assembly Member for Harrow and Brent, said: “I hope the landmark conviction at the Old Bailey goes some way towards stopping female genital mutilation.

“A lot of good work is being done to stop the sickening practice of FGM but more needs to be done collectively by the authorities as well as our community.”

Mr Shah said he wanted to pay a “special tribute” to Norbury School in Harrow who have “pioneered” FGM campaigns in schools and have helped raise awareness among pupils, parents and the wider community.

He added: “I’m glad that the Mayor of London and the London Assembly Members too continue to work towards eliminating female genital mutilation.”

The woman who was convicted will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on March 8.

Carrying out female genital mutilation carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.

In 2017 the NSPCC Helpline was contacted 313 times by people worried about girls who may have suffered, or are at risk of, FGM.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan also welcomed the conviction.

Mr Khan said: “Female genital mutilation is a devastating crime which affects thousands of young girls across the country.

“Today’s landmark conviction sends a clear message to those who practice this barbaric act that it will no longer go unpunished.

“Every woman and girl should be safe and feel safe wherever they are in London, and we will continue our fight to end female genital mutilation with every power we have.”


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