The Supreme Islamic Council has condemned activists against female circumcision as the council defends the practice as inherently Islamic. 

The council’s Fatwa and Moon Sighting Committee highlights the differences between female circumcision and female genital mutilation.

“Muslim jurists have agreed that this type (FGM) is illegal in Islam because of the harm it inflicts on women. In the same vein, the Committee also strongly condemns entities and individuals who denounce the practice of female circumcision and call on the authorities to arrest/prosecute anyone who practices it,” the committee said

“Female Circumcision is not just a merely inherited custom as falsely claimed by those who are not conversant with the Islamic Law. Rather, it is one of the virtues of Islam and among the Sunnah practices approved by the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon Him, who said: Five practices are characteristics of the Fitra, of which, he mentioned circumcision. 

“The legitimacy of female circumcision has been proven in several authentic hadiths of the Prophet (peace be upon him). Therefore, Muslim jurists agreed on its legality.

“Some Jurists have even argued that female circumcision is obligatory, whereas others have considered it a recommended act of Sunnah. However, it was not reported by any of the reliable Muslim scholars denying the legality of female circumcision in the manner prescribed by the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) because the noble Shari’ah does not acknowledge anything at all that causes harm to people, be it health or physical, for it’s free from that,” the committee added.

“The Fatwa Committee of the Gambia Supreme Islamic Council calls on the Government The Gambia to reconsider the law prohibiting female circumcision, which stipulates the arrest/prosecution of anyone who practices it, given that we are Muslims, and the most precious thing we have in this life is our true religion,” it continued.

Reporting by Adama Makasuba

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