In the state Duma a bill, involving the introduction of criminal penalties for female circumcision. The relevant document is available in the database of documents of the lower house of Parliament.
If the project is accepted, and female circumcision will be punished up to 10 years in prison. The author of the bill was made by the Deputy Maria Maksakova-Igenbergs.
It proposed to amend the criminal code, the term “discrimination against women on religious grounds”, which is expressed in the partial or total removal of external genitalia and explain the purpose of a religious cult”. For this offence the Deputy offered to punish imprisonment for the term from five to seven years in prison. In the case that circumcision will be done a minor, it shall be punishable by deprivation of liberty for a period of 7 to 10 years.
In the explanatory note to the document Maksakova recalled that Russia, under the Constitution, is a secular state, and notes that “such interference is nothing but a form of mutilation, based on discrimination by gender”. In her opinion, only “beliefs of the supporters of “female circumcision” that this procedure physiologically protects women from immoral lifestyle, are the driving force of this anachronism”.
Debate around the issue of female circumcision started after the publication of the report of the Fund “Legal initiative in Russia” (SRJI) about the practice of female circumcision in Dagestan.
After that, the President of the coordination centre of North Caucasus Muslims Ismail Berdiyev said that circumcision is necessary to make “all women”. He later explained that his words were incorrectly interpreted.
The day before, on 18 August, the Council on human rights under the President of Russia sent to the Prosecutor General, the material available on the subject of female circumcision.