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Thursday 10 August 2017

CEDAW67 Italy > Major Setback for Intersex Human Rights at UN :-(

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook Since 2011, intersex human rights at the UN and particularly intersex and IGM survivors NGOs participating in UN Treaty body human rights mechanisms have been a ground-breaking success story.

So far, the UN Committees CRC, CAT, CRPD, CEDAW, and the HRCttee have issued 26 reprimands for Intersex Genital Mutilations to 16 complicit States, unmistakably condemning IGM as genital mutilation and a hamful practice, as cruel and inhuman treatment or torture, as a violation of the integrity of the person, as institutionalised violence and as unlawful human experimentation, calling for legislation to criminalise IGM and guarantee access to redress for victims.

What's more, UN Treaty bodies recognising the severe pain and suffering of IGM survivors and consistently reprimanding complicit states have in turn greatly increased public awareness of intersex human rights, and led to numerous positive statements by different international and national bodies and organisations.

However, after 2 1/2 particularly good years for intersex human rights with almost monthly new reprimands, now everything seems coming to a screeching halt ...

Intersex human rights at the UN under attack!  

"These days my most pressing concern is how our pain and suffering is constantly used as a means to an end for LGBT and gender politics, and how such misrepresentations seem to increasingly gain traction also at the UN."
   –  Daniela Truffer, CAT61 Informal Statement 26.07.2017

Currently, 

  • in UN Press releases and Summary records, intersex and IGM are inceasingly misrepresented as trans, LGBT and discrimination issues, for example IGM as "sex alignment surgeries", IGM survivors as "transsexual children", and intersex NGOs as "a group of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender and intersex victims of discrimination and violence"

  • the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) during its last session did NO LONGER raise intersex and IGM under "harmful practices", but only under "health-care"

  • also in the latest Concluding observations (see below), CEDAW did NO LONGER raise intersex and IGM under "harmful practices", but instead only issued recommendations regarding "health-care", proposing 'self-regulation' of IGM by the current perpetrators including the Ministry of Health and health-care providers developing a "health-care protocol for intersex children"but NO LONGER calling for legislation to eliminate IGM and to ensure access to redress and justice for IGM survivors like in previous recommendations!

This is a major setback for intersex human rights at the UN,

fueled not only by the constant denial and pinkwashing of IGM by State parties, but also by often big-money LGBT NGOs and agencies including Amnesty London, EU-FRA, UNFE New York – and countless others – constantly misrepresenting intersex and IGM as "LGBT", "discrimination" and "health-care" issues, while conveniently failing to recognise that intersex and IGM first and foremost constitute genital mutilation, a harmful practice, cruel and inhuman treatment, and other serious violations of non-derogable human rights, and MUST be addressed accordingly.

Also beyond the latest CEDAW Concluding observations (see below), this is a serious threat to intersex human rights, which may rather sooner than later spell their very end not only at the UN.

This is a wake-up call!

If intersex and IGM are no longer reognised by UN Treaty bodies as cruel and inhuman treatment, harmful practice, institutionalised violence, etc., this will have serious and far-reaching consequences for all intersex people everywhere – and in particular for intersex children at risk of being submitted to IGM.

So, if you care about intersex human rights, and if you don't want intersex children to continue to be mutilated every day, stop looking the other way when voices of IGM survivors are misrepresented or drowned out, and the pain and suffering of IGM survivors is used for third party interests. Thank you!

CEDAW67: Intersex (Non-)Recommendations for Italy

StopIGM.org regrets that the Committee, after having issued 5 Concluding observations on intersex and IGM under "harmful practices" to France, Switzerland, Netherlands, Germany, and Ireland, in its latest recommendations to Italy now considers non-consensual, unnecessary genital surgeries on intersex children as a "health issue" instead. We maintain that Intersex Genital Mutilations are NOT "health-care" or "different opinions", and hope that in the future the Committee will again consider intersex and IGM under art. 5 "harmful practices".

>>> CEDAW/C/ITA/CO/7, on intersex: paras 41 (e) + 42 (e), p. 13 (PDF) 

"Health

41.    The Committee is concerned about:

         […]

         (e)    The fact that intersex children are subjected to irreversible surgery for intersex variation and other medical treatments without their free and informed consent.

42.    The Committee, recalling its general recommendation No. 24 (1999) on women and health, recommends that the State party:

         […]

         (e)    Develop and implement a rights-based health-care protocol for intersex children, ensuring that children and their parents are appropriately informed of all options; that children are involved, to the greatest extent possible, in decision-making about medical interventions and that their choices are respected; and that no child is subjected to unnecessary surgery or treatment."
     

2016-CEDAW-Swiss-Intersex-IGM

IGM Practices in Italy: 2017 CEDAW Report
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Italy• Complicity of the State  Harmful Practice
>>> Download as PDF (650 kb)

>>> CEDAW Timeline Italy 2017
>
>> CEDAW67 > Claudia Balsamo's Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Italy
>>>
CEDAW67 UN Press Release on NGO Briefing english | français
>>> VIDEO + TRANSCRIPT: Italy Questioned over IGM by CEDAW – Gov Denies

>>> CRPD18 > Misappropriation of Intersex Funding by LGBT Groups

See also:
26 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Saturday 29 July 2017

"Circular No. 7": A step back for intersex human rights in Chile

Ministry of Health Chile: “Circular No. 7 of 23. Aug 2016 complementing Circular No. 18"

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

After Chile was reprimanded for Intersex Genital Mutilations by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in October 2015, in December the Chilean Ministry of Health issued a "Circular No. 18" aimed at combatting IGM practices.

Sadly, despite that in spring 2016 Chile was additionally reprimanded also by the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) for IGM, on 23.08.2016 the Chilean Ministry of Health issued their new "Circular No. 7" wich turned out to be a major step back undoing most of the (anyway small) advances of the earlier "Circular No. 18".

Kudos to Laura Inter and Hana Aoi of "Brújula Intersexual" who recently published an analysis of this deplorable step back by Chile:
>>> English summary and links to documents incl. translated Circulars
>>> Extensive full article in english (PDF) 

May this dangerous precedent serve as a timely reminder of why "self regulation" by doctors and health ministries (as e.g. advocated by Amnesty London) won't stop IGM, and neither will toothless laws without actual consequences for both perpetrators and accessories like in Malta.

Adequately sanctioning or criminalizing IGM is key!

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Friday 28 July 2017

UNCAT61 > Ireland Questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations by UN Committee against Torture (CAT) - Gov Denies Yet Again!

>>> UNCAT61 > Testimony by Gavan Coleman to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Ireland
>>>
CAT61 Timeline Ireland 2017

UN-CAT 61st Session @ Palais Wilson, Geneva 26.07.2017: Getting ready ...
(bottom right corner: Committee expert Ms. Racu who asked a question on IGM)
#CATIreland  #UNCAT61  #NoMoreTortureIreland

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

At the 61st Session of the UN Committee against Torture (CAT), Ireland is being questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations, with the Committee experts for Ireland, Ms. Gaer and Ms. Racu, both raising IGM in Ireland yesterday.

Today the Irish delegation has to reply to those questions during the 2nd Session on Ireland, 27.07.2017 15:00–18:00h CET.

StopIGM.org will be reporting LIVE from Palais Wilson! The session should also be livestreamed on webtv.un.org (during the 1st session yesterday, due to technical problems the transmission was audio only.)

Session 2, Fri 28.07.2017, 15–18h CET

14:52h: Committee members and the Irish delegation are arriving, the livestream is back on! Today the Irish Delegation will have to answer to yesterday's questions ...

15:03h: Session is on, Head of Delegation David Stanton, Minister of State for Equality, Immigration and Integration, Department of Justice and Equality kicking off ... announces statistics will be delivered in writing later (to be published on the Committee's session homepage) ... Michael Donnellan of the Irish Prison Service starts answering ...

15:27h: Answers re: mental health now up ... followed by answers on the ex-gratia scheme for survivors of symphysiotomy ...

15:34h: Sarah Rose Flynn, Assistant Principal Officer, International Research and Policy Unit of the Department of Health (non-)answers on intersex genital mutilation! Allegedly only 2-3 children with ambiguous genitalia are born in Ireland, and all are treated in Our Lady's Hospital in Crumlin (Dublin). Surgery would only be done when medically necessary and after an unanimous decision of the multidisciplinary and parents. Every 3 months there's a meeting with paediatricians also from other Irish clinics and with a consultant from Great Ormons Street Children's Hospital (London).
Besides the last item, the (non-)answer was pretty much copy/pasted from last time at CEDAW ... And the (non-)answer completely ignores the question of implementation of CRC and CEDAW recommendations, completely ignores the evidence of IGM1 “hypospadias repair” also being perpetrated at the University hospitals of Cork and Tallaght (see NGO Report, PDF p. 10), completely ignores the question on children being sent abroad, as admitted to by Crumlin's Dr Costigan in in the case of “more complicated rare surgeries” in a report in the Irish Examiner [WARNING: Grossly misleading and inappropriate pictures], makes excuses regarding data collection and statistics, and generally denies the responsability of the Irish state ... :-( :-( :-( Transcript to follow ...

16:38h: The last answers of first round, regarding police force ...

16:46h: Follow-up questions by CAT co-rapporteur Ms. Felice Gaer ... psychiatric system ... Magdalene laundries ...Commission of investigations act ... baby homes ... symphysiotomy ... 8th Amendment ... medically unnecessary interventions during childbirth ... symphysiotomy and consent ... permission to leave to land ...

17:00h: Follow-up questions by CAT co-rapporteur Ms. Ana Racu ...training of law enforcement officers ... training for medical personnel, Istambul Convention ... national preventive mechanism ... prison overcrowding, particilarly Mormont and Limerick ...medical services in prisons ... prisoners with psychological issues ... remand prisoners ... juveniles in detention, solitary confinement, violence ... prison complaint mechanism ... 

17:13h: Follow-up questions by other Committee members ...

17:30h: Intermission ... there were no follow-up questions on intersex ...

17:41h: Session resumes after short intermission with additional aswers by Delegation members ...

18:01h: CAT chairperson Modvig concludes the session.

Session 1, Thu 27.07.2017, 10–13h CET

ca. 11:20h: YAY!! CAT expert on Ireland Ms. Felice Gaer raises involuntary surgery on intersex children, asks about implementation of previous CRC and CEDAW recommendations. :-) Transcript to follow.

ca. 12:25h: YAY!! CAT expert on Ireland Ms. Ana Racu raises “intersex genital mutilation”, aks about data collection disaggregated by type of IGM and age, and about plans to legislate against the practice. :-) Transcript to follow.

>>> UNCAT61 > Testimony by Gavan Coleman to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Ireland
>>>
CAT61 Timeline Ireland 2017

NGO Report to the 2nd Report of Ireland
on the Convention against Torture (CAT)

 
>>>  Download (PDF 250 kb)

  
Compiled by:
Gavan Coleman
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Thursday 27 July 2017

UNCAT61 > Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Ireland

Gavan Coleman (centre), with Daniela Truffer (right) and Markus Bauer (left), after testifying to IGM in Ireland to the UN Committee against Torture (CAT), Geneva 26.07.2017

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

At the 61st Session of the UN Committee against Torture, before Ireland was questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations, NGOs had the possibility to brief CAT in closed briefings.

Read below the 1.25-minutes oral statement by Irish intersex advocate and IGM survivor Gavan Coleman:
>>> Download as PDF (75kb)

 

StopIGM.org
NGO Oral Statement CAT61 Ireland, 26.07.2017

Gavan Coleman

I'm an Irish intersex person. As a child I had surgery on my groin and scrotum, where I still have scars.

At 18 I was pressured to consent to a mastectomy, without having been fully informed.

In comparison to many of my peers, I still consider myself lucky, I can still enjoy sex and don't have recurring pain.

Intersex children are subjected to involuntary, unnecessary genital surgeries and other procedures that would be considered inhumane on other children.

In Ireland, Intersex Genital Mutilations continue to be advocated and paid for by the public Health Service Executive (HSE). [1]

Paediatricians publicly admit to performing involuntary surgeries, or sending children to England. [2]

This Committee [3] has repeatedly considered such acts as ill-treatment in health-care settings, as did the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture [4] and the Special Rapporteur on Torture. [5]

Ireland has already been recommended by CRC [6] to prevent non-consensual unnecessary treatments on intersex children, and to adopt legal provisions in order to provide redress.

The State party fails to do so.

We therefore respectfully ask the Committee to raise this issue and to sternly remind Ireland of its obligations under the Convention articles 2, 6, 10, and 14, and General Comments No. 2 and 3.

Thank you.

[1]  2017 CAT Ireland NGO Report, p. 8-10, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2017-CAT-Ireland-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM.pdf
[2]  Irish Examiner, “What happens when a child is born intersex in Ireland?”, 04.11.2016, Cover story, p. 7-9
[3]  CAT/C/DEU/CO/5, para 20; CAT/C/CHE/CO/7, para 20, CAT/C/AUT/CO/6, paras 44-45; CAT/C/DNK/CO/6-7, paras 42-43; CAT/C/CHN-HKG/CO/4-5, paras 28-29; CAT/C/FRA/CO/7, paras 32-33
[4]  End violence and harmful medical practices on intersex children and adults, UN and regional experts urge, 24.10.2016, http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=20739&LangID=E
[5]  Ibid.; A/HRC/22/53, 01.02.2013, paras 77, 76
[6]  CRC/C/IRL/CO/3-4, paras 39-40

>>> CAT61 Timeline Ireland 2017

NGO Report to the 2nd Report of Ireland
on the Convention against Torture (CAT)

 
>>>  Download (PDF 250 kb)

  
Compiled by:
Gavan Coleman
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Tuesday 25 July 2017

CEDAW67 > VIDEO + TRANSCRIPT: Italy Questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations by UN Women's Rights Committee – Gov Denies

>>> CEDAW67 > Claudia Balsamo's Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Italy
>>>
Cedaw Timeline Italy 2017

UN-CEDAW 67th Session @ Palais des Nations, Geneva 04.07.2017: Getting ready ...
#CEDAWItaly   #UNCEDAW67

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookItaly was up for review of IGM practices at the 67th session
of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) on 
Tue 4 July 10:00-13:00h CET + 15:00-18:00h CET.

The livestream is archived here: Session 1 | Session 2

StopIGM.org reported LIVE from Palais des Nations , hoping for strong questions on IGM practices:

CEDAW 67 Italy Intersex Q&A: Transcript + Video

Session 1, Thu 04.07.2017, 15–18h CET

Under CEDAW art. 5 (harmful practices), and also else during the 1st session, unfortunately no questions on intersex were asked ... :-( :-( :-(

Session 2, Thu 04.07.2017, 15–18h CET

16:03h: (Video english | original (spanish) @ 1:02:51) YAY!!    CEDAW Task Force Italy expert Magalys Arocha Dominguez raises IGM together with forced sterislisation on Roma women :-) (but unfortunately calls IGM “the practice to have sex change corrections early in life when the situation might still be unclear”). :-/
Unofficial Transcript (UN simultaneous translation from original Spanish):

«And a final and last question relates to the existence of specialised services with sufficient methodological and practical guides and regular inspection, concerning these services being offered above all for Roma women and migrant women located in the country, women with disabilities, lesbians and transsexuals in specific areas which might be very sensitive, as it's the case for example regarding the area of reproductive and sexual health or indeed operations to prevent reproduction to women with disabilities and Roma women. How does the state prevent that kind of practice in both in normative and practical way, [1:03:38] and also the practice to have sex change corrections early in life when the situation might still be unclear. Thank you.»

(The Italian Delegation then didn't answer the bit on IGM.)

16:58h: (Video english) @ 1:58:28) YAY!!   Less than 90 seconds before the end of the session, CEDAW expert Particia Schulz is eventually allowed a follow-up question, spelling out intersex children, harmful practices and legislation to end IGM, and raising the CEDAW/CRC Joint General Recomm. “on harmful practices”! :-)
Unofficial Transcript:

«Thank you very much Madam Chair for allowing a last question on my side. I refer to the question asked by Miss Arocha concerning corrective surgeries which is medically unnecessary very often and irreversible surgery and other medical treatment performed on intersex children, not with the consent of the persons themselves or their parents. These interventions are now seen more and more by a number of UN human rights bodies as a violation of the right to health as well a form of harmful practice according to the Joint General Recommendation this Committee and the Committee on the Rights of the Child developed. So my question: Do you plan to adopt legislation to protect the bodily integrity, autonomy and self-determination of intersex persons, maybe by criminalising these interventions when unnecessary, and to provide for compensation for those who underwent those measures without their free prior and informed consent? Thank you.»

(The session goes into extra time.)

17:00h: (Video english | original (italian) @ 1:59:49) Italian Delegate Assunta Morresi (Ministry of Health) issues the usual denials, allegedly only “very few” mutilations and only for medical reasons with allegedly “no data or indication of forced interventions”, parent's consent allegedly sufficient, but if wished by the doctors (!!!) they would be open for “discussions” ... :-(
Unofficial Transcript (UN simultaneous translation from original Italian):

«This kind of surgery is very limited, there have been 9 surgical operations between the years of 0 and 9 in 2015, and all these interventions have taken into account medical requirements. And of course we need the informed consent of the parents or of a tutor. So far we had not had any data or indication of forced interventions. Everything has taken place case by case according to medical indications and with consent. If scientific societies believe that it is necessary to have a discussion on this the ministry of course will be available.»

17:01h: (Video english) @ 2:01:01) CEDAW expert Particia Schulz follows up, explains parents cannot ‘consent’ to IGM! :-)
Unofficial Transcript:

«Yes, actually, more and more the discussion is that parents cannot consent to such interventions because of the gravity they have and the consequences that are lifelong. So the child suffers during the childhood and may suffer during the whole adulthood. So this is a question that I think should be adressed in view of these considerations. Thank you very much.»

(There was no follow-up answer by Italy.)

17:04h: Chairperson Dalia Leinarte closes the session.

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

This was way too close for comfort, as in UN Treaty body mechanisms there is the iron-cast rule, “no questions during the review, no recommendations”. Even more worrying however is the fact that the issue was only raised under art. 10 “healthcare”, and NOT under art. 5 “harmful practices”, and that obviously at the UN the harmful misconception persists, intersex and more specifically would be about “sex change”, and generally a trans or LGBT issue, a harmful prejudice that is constantly fueled at the UN (and elswhere) by big money LGBT NGOs and agencies including Amnesty London, EU-FRA and UNFE New York, and which may rather sooner than later spell the end of intersex human rights at the UN! Nonetheless, let's hope for strong Concluding observations for Italy under art. 5, due at the end of the 67th CEDAW session ...

>>> CEDAW67 > Claudia Balsamo's Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Italy
>>>
CEDAW67 Italy: UN Press Release on NGO Briefing english | français
>>>
Cedaw Timeline Italy 2017

2017 CEDAW Italy NGO Intersex IGM

NGO Report to the 7th Report of Italy on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)

>>>  Download (PDF 650 kb)

 
Compiled by:
Claudia Balsamo
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Saturday 22 July 2017

“Inferior”, “Abnormal”, “Deformed”: Intersex, IGM and the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD)

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

The following is an excerpt from an NGO submission by StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org to the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities
>>> fulltext DOC (83 kb) | PDF (102 kb
for a Study on the sexual and reproductive health and rights of girls with disabilities (more info), to be presented at the upcoming 72nd session of the UN General Assembly starting on 12 September .

4. “Inferior”, “Abnormal”, “Deformed”: Intersex, IGM and the CRPD

Individual doctors, national and international medical bodies, public and private healthcare providers have traditionally been framing and “treating” intersex variations as a form of disability in need to be “cured” surgically, often with racist, eugenic and suprematist undertones.  [10] [11] [12] [13]

It is important to note that Intersex is an umbrella term for many diverse variations and “diagnoses”, of which only a few specific and comparatively rare conditions represent an immediate medical situation or impairment, notably Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH) in the salt-losing form which constitutes a vital (metabolical) medical need for daily hormone substitution of lacking cortisol – however, this does NOT constitute a need for genital surgeries!

Nonetheless, doctors persistently use this specific exception as a justification for imposing unnecessary genital surgery and other treatments on ALL persons with variations of sex anatomy to “fix” them. [14]

Thus, as a result of having been submitted to IGM practices, most intersex people have actual physical and psychological impairments and medical needs (chronic pain, loss of sexual sensibility, lifelong psychological trauma, metabolic problems, and need for daily hormone substitution after castration, etc.). Many can’t work anymore, and live in poverty due to persistent barriers preventing them from full and effective participation in society on an equal basis as well as from the full enjoyment of all human rights, including their rights to physical integrity and self-determination, their rights to freedom from violence, harmful practices and torture or ill-treatment, their rights to the best attainable standard of health, and their rights to justice, redress and compensation. For example in Germany, many IGM survivors are officially recognised as “disabled” due to the consequences of IGM. [15]

On top, both IGM survivors and intersex persons having escaped surgery are facing (fear of) stigmatisation, ostracism and rejection by modern society because of their (sometimes) “unusual appearance”, compounded by doctors’ constant conjuring up the birth of an intersex child as a “psycho-social emergency” and qualifying it as a “Disorder” in need of urgent involuntary “treatment”.

Accordingly, the easier an intersex trait can be tested prenatally, the higher the (selective) abortion rates, [16] most intersex diagnoses are listed as permissible for deselection in State sponsored preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) guidelines [17], and e.g. in Switzerland IGM practices are paid for by the Federal Disability Insurance. [18]

In consequence, intersex persons and organisations are applying the social model of disability to devise strategies in their fight for bodily integrity and recognition as fully human beings, often in collaboration with disability groups. As Jay Hayes-Light of UKIA, an IGM survivor as well as wheelchair user (due to an accident not related with his intersex condition) puts it: [19]

“Medical practitioners view intersex as something that needs to be fixed. We are regarded as deformed, somehow in deficit anatomically, and therefore the way to fix it is to cobble us together into what they deem to be an acceptable format, instead of allowing us to exist in society.”

[10] 2014 CRC NGO Report, p. 52, 69, 84, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2014-CRC-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM_v2.pdf

[11] In the WHO “World Atlas of Birth Defects (2nd Edition)”, many intersex diagnoses are listed, including “indeterminate sex” and “hypospadias”: http://web.archive.org/web/20160305152127/http://prenatal.tv/lecturas/world%20atlas%20of%20birth%20defects.pdf

[12] “The Racist Roots of Intersex Genital Mutilations” http://stop.genitalmutilation.org/post/Racist-Roots-of-Intersex-Genital-Mutilations-IGM

[13] For 500 years of “scientific” prejudice in a nutshell, see 2016 CEDAW France NGO Report, p. 7, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2016-CEDAW-France-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM.pdf

[14] This excuse constitutes also the historic root for imposing systematic unnecessary early surgeries, see 2014 CRC NGO report, p. 54–56 http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2014-CRC-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM_v2.pdf

[15] For example in Germany, see 2015 CRPD Germany NGO Report, p. 16, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2015-CRPD-LoI-Germany_NGO-Report_Zwischengeschlecht_Intersex-IGM.doc

[16] For stats and references, see “Selective Intersex Abortions: XXY 74%, Indeterminate Sex 47%, Hypospadias 2%”, http://stop.genitalmutilation.org/post/Selective-Intersex-Abortions-Hypospadias-Intersex-XXY

[17] For example in the UK, see http://guide.hfea.gov.uk/pgd/ [Note: The HFEA homepage is under reconstruction, currently the list can be found at https://www.hfea.gov.uk/pgd-conditions/], See also 2014 CRC NGO Report, p. 76, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2014-CRC-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM_v2.pdf

[18] See 2014 CRC NGO Report, p. 76, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2014-CRC-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM_v2.pdf

[19] https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/02/male-and-female-what-is-it-like-to-be-intersex

2017 SR Disability Intersex IGM

Intersex, IGM and CRPD: 2017 Submission to SR Disability
Sexual and reproductive health and rights of girls with disabilities
IGM and CRPD  Harmful Stereotypes and Prejudice  Harmful Practice
>>> Download DOC (83 kb) | PDF (102 kb)

2017 CRPD PSWG NGO Intersex IGM

IGM Practices in the UK: 2017 NGO Report to CRPD
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM and CRPD  UK & NHS violating Human Rights  Right to Integrity

>>> Download DOC (486 kb) | PDF (254 kb)  

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 16 July 2017

"eUROG€N": More €U Millions for Intersex Genital Mutilators (1)

Click to enlarge!   (Picture from “eUROG€N” self-presentation, PDF)

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

State-sponsored Intersex Genital Mutilation stays in business – (not only) allover the EU and associated states.
“ERNs”
or “European Reference Networks” are the next batch of €uro millions over the next 5 years to practice and proliferate IGM, paid out to the usual international consortium of Intersex Genital Mutilators represented mainly in the 2 ERNs, “eUROG€N” or “Network Urogenital Diseases”, and “Endo-€RN” (more soon), as well as their regional trade organisations including ESPU, ESPE, ESE and EAU

>>> “eUROG€N” self-presentation March 2017 (PDF)
>>>
3rd conference on European Reference Networks, Vilnius, 9 March 2017 
>>> Open Letter by Persons Concerned, Partners, Families, Friends and Allies (PDF) with 92 101 signatories to 'I-DSD', 'DSDnet', 'eUROGEN', 'Endo-ERN', 'DSD-Life' and Affiliates including 115 EU-funded IGM clinics in 27 countries.

“The ERN initiative receives support from several EU funding programmes, including the Health Programme, the Connecting Europe Facility and Horizon 2020.”ERN 2017 Brochure (PDF), p.8

This renewed €uro injection comes timely for the IGM perpetrators, as current funding vehicles “D$Dnet” and “D$D-Life” will expire in 2018, same as predecessors “EuroD$D” and “Netzwerk D$D/Intersexualität” earlier. From early on, both the “European Association of Urology (EAU)” and the “European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology (ESPE)” have been actively involved in securing this funding.

(Meanwhile in the States, 'to keep pace with' these EU 'advances in basic and clinical DSD research', the NIH keeps funding a similar 'D$D Transnational Research Network' for U.S. mutilators – as do other public bodies in other regions, too.)

“eUROG€N Work Stream 1” includes all of the most frequent forms of IGM practices.

The paeditaric urologists of “eUROG€N” represent the most prominent speciality of paediatric surgeons actually wielding the knife in IGM practices and, together with their buddies, the paediatric endocrinologists, they are the main culprits in the “interdisciplinary groups” leading the systematic practice since 1950.

“eUROG€N Work Stream 2” includes further “rare conditions” and “highly specialised” surgical “reconstructions”, and is led by a notorious public advocate and perpetrator of IGM practices, from a public University Hospital which has been a notorious advocate and perpetrator of IGM practices for over 60 years, and both the hospital and Prof Fisch tried in vain to pressure intersex activists including Zwischengeschlecht.org to take down posts denouncing them as genital mutilators. (Picture: “eUROG€N” self-presentation, PDF)

Compared to the more “purist” approach of precursor funding vehicles “DSDnet” and “DSD-Life”, as well as predecessors “EuroDSD” and “Netzwerk DSD/Intersexualität”, “eUROGEN” does its best to muddy the waters by also including non-DSD-related actual medical issues like for example penile and abdominal cancer in the “eUROGEN Work Stream 3” (as does “Endo-ERN” by including “Gender Dysphoria” and “Disorders of sex maturation (DSM)”), leading to some perpetrators lamenting less generous funding.

“MoH of Lithuania”, “European Commission”, “Under the Auspices of Malta EU 2017”:
Logos displayed at the 2017 €RN “Kick-Off” Conference in Vilnius (Official Report, PDF)

Nonetheless, this “camouflage” still seems to work wonders on willing politician accomplices, as demonstrated amongst others by the Maltese Health Minister publicly welcoming this public funding of IGM perpetrators and practices this spring (despite that IGM is – at least on paper – prohibited in Malta), and the Maltese Member of the ERM Board of Member States (BoMS) in her presentation (PDF, p. 6) unwillingly highlighted the quite common State practice (particularly within the Comonwealth) of sending intersex children “overseas” for IGM, by underlining Malta's long “special” relationship with notorious IGM perpetrator “Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children (GOSH)” in London.

How much longer?!!

>>> Open Letter by Persons Concerned, Partners, Families, Friends and Allies (PDF) with 92 101 signatories to 'I-DSD', 'DSDnet', 'eUROGEN', 'Endo-ERN', 'DSD-Life' and Affiliates including 115 EU-funded IGM clinics in 27 countries.

>>> EU Parliament condemns IGM, calls "to prevent, ban and prosecute"

>>> EU: Biggest funder of IGM - how much longer?! 
>>>
'D$Dnet' – EU Millions for IGM Perpetrators
>>>
‘D$D-Life’ – The Global IGM Cartel Explained 

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Tuesday 11 July 2017

CCPR120 > Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Switzerland

Daniela Truffer testifying to IGM in Switzerland to the UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee), Geneva 03.07.2017

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

At the 120th Session of the UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) as the Treaty body monitoring implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR), before Switzerland was questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations, NGOs had the possibility to brief the HRCttee in a closed meeting.

Read below the 5-minutes oral statement by Swiss intersex advocate and IGM survivor Daniela Truffer:  >>> PDF (103 kb) 
 

StopIGM.org – STOP Intersex Genital Mutilations
NGO Oral Statement CCPR 120 Switzerland, 03.07.2017

Daniela Truffer

Thank you, Chair

I was born 1965 in Switzerland, with so called “ambiguous” genitalia. The doctors couldn‘t tell if I was a girl or a boy.

First they cut me open between my legs to see, if they find a vagina.

At two months they opened my abdomen and found healthy testes, which they threw in the garbage bin, without telling my parents.

At seven they cut my genital to make me look more like a girl, allegedly with my consent. Today they probably would make a boy out of me, by even more surgeries.

The doctors always lied to me and my parents. I spent my life in fear, pain and shame. I couldn't talk to anybody.

Only at 35 I discovered that I am not alone and that there are self-help groups.

At 42, I was lucky to obtain my medical records, but only after a long hassle, and with statutes of limitations long expired.

I still suffer from periodical pain between my legs, hypersensitivity, and painful scars.

I did ten years of psychoanalytic therapy, otherwise I wouldn‘t be here now.

While all surgeries were paid for in full by the State, for the psychotherapy I had to pay a third by myself.

As substantiated in our 2017 NGO report, [1] in Switzerland all forms of Intersex Genital Mutilations are still perpetrated with impunity, paid for by the Swiss federal Disability Insurance, while adequate psychosocial support is still not available.

However, the Swiss State party can no longer in good faith claim ignorance of the severity of the human rights violations perpetrated against intersex children.

In 2012, the Swiss National Advisory Commission on Biomedical Ethics (NEK-CNE), having been tasked by the Swiss Federal Government, recommended a legal review into
   1. prohibiting the practice
   2. ensuring access to redress andc ompensation, and
   3. to provide access to free counselling.

In 2015 and 2016 Concluding observations CRC, CAT and CEDAW recognised IGM in Switzerland to constitute ill-treatment and a harmful practice, and explicitly obliged the State party to take effective legislative, administrative, judicial or other measures to implement above Ethics Commission recommendations.

However, despite in the 2016 State report to this Committee for the first time acknowledging that IGM practices have been “denounced [...] by the Federal Parliament and Council as well as by the National Ethics Commission”, and in a Federal Council statement on the Ethics Commission recommendations further acknowledging that IGM practices result in “considerable consequential damage and severe suffering”, to this day the Swiss State party undeviatingly refuses to take effective measures, but instead counterfactually claims,

  • IGM practices would only be “approved for between one and three children per year of birth”,
  • IGM practices would be strictly a thing of the “past”,
  • the recommendations of the Ethics Commission would all be “already implemented or in the process of being implemented”,
  • however “free psychosocial support” for persons and families concerned would be “impossible” to finance. [2]

Accordingly, in 2017 votes on a petition by our NGO, both the Council of the State [3] and the National Council [4] refused to legislate against IGM practices, referring to above counterfactual claims. Although both chambers conceded that “premature unnecessary” genital surgery “constitutes a violation of the right to physical integrity”, they nonetheless claimed, “We believe medical professionals are nowadays sufficiently sensitised to the issue and only undertake such interventions when they are justified.” [5]

However, the true state of awareness of the medical profession is illustrated by a current “review” of the medical practice at the Zurich University Children's Hospital funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation, [6] where the so called “interdisciplinary team” in charge consists mostly of doctors actively involved in today's treatments while persons concerned are not represented, enabling the Hospital to destroy about 80% of its historic medical files on IGM practices, including those of a member of the self-help group, [7] thus depriving him of his last chance to ever learn what exactly was done to him at at the Department of Surgery when he was five. [8]

We therefore hope the Committee will ask the Swiss delegation tough questions on IGM, and will sternly remind Switzerland of its obligations under the Covenant, art. 7 and 24, and the general comment No. 20.

Thank you.

[1]  2017 CRPD Swiss NGO Report, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2017-CCPR-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM.pdf
[2]  ibid., B.3.a), p. 7-8
[3]  Vote of 16.03.2017, https://www.parlament.ch/de/ratsbetrieb/amtliches-bulletin/amtliches-bulletin-die-verhandlungen?SubjectId=39798
[4]  Vote of 16.06.2017, https://www.parlament.ch/de/ratsbetrieb/amtliches-bulletin/amtliches-bulletin-die-verhandlungen?SubjectId=40660 
[5]  Report of the Legal Affairs Committee of the National Council (LAC-N, 06.04.2017 recommending [rejection]), p. 2 https://www.parlament.ch/centers/kb/Documents/2015/Kommissionsbericht_RK-N_15.2043_2017-04-06.pdf
[6]  http://www.snf.ch/en/researchinFocus/newsroom/Pages/news-161010-press-release-reviewing-the-treatment-of-differences-of-sex-development.aspx
[7]  Case No. 1 in the 2017 CCPR Swiss NGO Report, p. 18
[8]   See 2017 CAT LoIPR Swiss NGO Report, A.5., p. 9, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2017-CAT-LoIPR-Swiss-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM.pdf

>>> Bearing witness to IGM: UN-CEDAW67 Italy + CCPR120 Switzerland
>>> UN Press release on intersex Q&A during the review of Switzerland

NGO Report to the 4th Periodic Report of Switzerland on the  International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR)

>>> Download as PDF (809 kb)

Compiled by:
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org
Intersex.ch
SI Selbsthilfe Intersexualität

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 9 July 2017

CEDAW67 > Testimony to Intersex Genital Mutilation in Italy

>>> italiano 

Claudia Balsamo (left), with Daniela Truffer, after testifying to IGM in Italy to the
UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW),
Geneva 03.07.2017

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookAt the 67th Session of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), before Italy was questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations, NGOs had the possibility to brief CEDAW (>>> podcast of the entire briefing).

Read below the 2-minutes oral statement by Italian intersex advocate and IGM survivor Claudia Balsamo:
>>> PDF (77kb
  >>> Video (@ 9:10 min)
 

StopIGM.org
NGO Oral Statement CEDAW67 Italy, 03.07.2017

Claudia Balsamo

Thank you, Madame Chair

When I was born in 1960, I looked like a girl, but after a year my mother noticed I had atypical genitalia.

Countless exams by different doctors followed. At four they opened my abdomen and found normal testes.

When I was eleven, they removed my testes and cut my clitoris.

Due to the removal of parts of my clitoris and scarring, it's really hard for me to achieve orgasm.

Since 1985 I tried to obtain my medical records, but I was always refused on grounds of “professional secrecy”.

Only after my father died, in 2007 I found some documents in his desk, but then it was too late, and statutes of limitations had long expired.

To this day, I still see a psychologist to deal with all this, which I have to pay for out of my own pocket.

As shown in our report [1], in Italy all forms of Intersex Genital Mutilation persist, paid for by the state.

Doctors openly boast in the media about a large increase in surgeries [2], the National DSD Study Group openly advocates the practice [3], and Italian clinics collaborate with European projects promoting involuntary interventions [4].

These violations have been repeatedly brought to the attention of the State [5], and Italy has already been reprimanded by CRPD [6] for permitting IGM to continue.

Nonetheless, the State party fails to explicitly prohibit by law and adequately sanction or criminalise the practice.

Thank you.

[1]  2017 CEDAW Italy NGO Report, see Annexe 2, p. 23-28, http://intersex.shadowreport.org/public/2017-CEDAW- Italy-NGO-Zwischengeschlecht-Intersex-IGM.pdf
[2]  ibid., see A.8., p. 13-14
[3]  Gruppo di Studie It-DSD (2015), “Differenze dello sviluppo del sesso”, p. 4, http://www.gruppodistudio-it-dsd.org/diffsvilup/1_ntroduzione_overview.pdf
[4]  StopIGM.org (2017), “Open Letter of Concern to 6th I-DSD 2017, DSDnet, eUROGEN, Endo-ERN, DSD-Life and Affiliates”, http://stop.genitalmutilation.org/public/Open_Letter_I-DSD_Copenhagen_2017.pdf
[5]  2017 CEDAW Italy NGO Report, see A.8., p. 13-14
[6]  CRPD/C/ITA/CO/1, paras 45-46

>>> Bearing witness to IGM: UN-CEDAW67 Italy + CCPR120 Switzerland
>>> CEDAW67 Italy: UN Press Release on NGO Briefing english | français
>>> CEDAW67 Italy: Video Session 2 @ 1:58h

2017 CEDAW Italy NGO Intersex IGM

NGO Report to the 7th Report of Italy on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)

>>>  Download (PDF 650 kb)

 
Compiled by:
Claudia Balsamo
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Thursday 6 July 2017

Pinkwashing of Intersex Genital Mutilations at the UN - CCPR120

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

When questioned over IGM practices at the UN, complicit States regularly deny the ongoing practice, then try to change the topic by switching to LGBT, SOGI, discrimination, civil registration language and issues instead – as can once more be observed in the following account of the intersex Q&A of Switzerland at the 120th Session of the Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) taken from the >>> corresponding UN press release:

(And yes, Switzerland is yet another State directly financing the ongoing genital mutilations of its intersex children – via the "Swiss Federal Disability Insurance (IV)" considering intersex as a "Birth Defect" no less, see NGO Report p. 8-10)

« Questions by Committee Experts

What was the position of the State party on the so-called corrective surgery on intersex children?

Replies by the Delegation

The Swiss anti-discrimination law did not have a special provision on sexual orientation and gender identity, but that would soon change. The draft bill tried to ensure that anyone speaking against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons was criminally liable. As for the Government’s attitude regarding surgery on intersex children, it believed that surgery should not take place unless it was absolutely necessary from the medical point of view. The civil registry could be modified with respect to sex changes.

Second Round of Questions by Experts

What were the practical steps taken by the State party to raise awareness among medical practitioners and the general public in order to prevent unnecessary genital reassignment surgery?

Replies by the Delegation

Switzerland was concerned about the issue of reconstructive surgery for intersex children. There had so far not been a case of reparations with respect to sexual reassignment surgery. »

How much longer?!

>>> Bearing witness to IGM @ CCPR120 Switzerland + CEDAW67 Italy

>>> CCPR120 UN Press release english | français 
>>> Video Session 1
| Session 2   

>>> CEDAW67 UN Press Release on NGO Briefing english | français 
>>> Video Session 2 @ 1:58h 

NGO Report to the 4th Periodic Report of Switzerland on the  International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR)

>>> Download as PDF (809 kb)

Compiled by:
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org
Intersex.ch
SI Selbsthilfe Intersexualität

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Wednesday 5 July 2017

Italy: «All forms of intersex genital mutilation persist, paid for by the State»

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook>>> UN press release, 13.07.2017:
« A representative of StopIGM.org provided the testimony of a person exposed to intersex genital mutilation as a child and said that all forms of intersex genital mutilation persisted in Italy, paid for by the State.  Doctors openly boasted in the media about a large increase in surgeries, while the national institutions openly advocated the practice.  Italy still failed to explicitly prohibit by law and adequately sanction or criminalize the practice. »

>>> July 2017: UN-CEDAW and HRCttee investigate IGM in Italy and Switzerland

2016-CEDAW-Swiss-Intersex-IGM

IGM Practices in Italy: 2017 CEDAW Report
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Italy• Complicity of the State  Harmful Practice
>>> Download as PDF (650 kb)

Mutilations génitales des intersexes devant l'ONU: «Cliniques italiennes collaborant avec des programmes européens»

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook>>> Communiqué de presse de l'ONU du 13.07.2017:

« StopIGM.org a exprimé sa préoccupation quant à la persistance des mutilations génitales des personnes intersexes financées par l'État.  L'ONG s'est inquiétée du nombre croissant d'opérations de ce type pratiquées par des médecins qui en font la promotion dans des cliniques italiennes collaborant avec des programmes européens. »

>>> July 2017: UN-CEDAW and HRCttee investigate IGM in Italy and Switzerland

2016-CEDAW-Swiss-Intersex-IGM

IGM Practices in Italy: 2017 CEDAW Report
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Italy• Complicity of the State  Harmful Practice
>>> Download as PDF (650 kb)

Tuesday 4 July 2017

Geneva > UN-CEDAW and Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) investigate IGM in Italy and Switzerland - Govs deny + pinkwash

Bearing witness to IGM at the UN: Claudia Balsamo, Daniela Truffer, Geneva 03.07.2017
#CEDAW67  #ItalyCEDAW  #CCPR120  #SwitzerlandCCPR  #Torture  #HarmfulPractice

CCPR120 Switzerland

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

During its 120th session, the UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) as the Treaty body monitoring implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR) is investigating Intersex Genital Mutilations for the very first time! 

StopIGM.org in collaboration with Swiss peer and parent's self-help groups Intersex.ch and SI Global have been denouncing IGM practices in Switzerland as a violation of CCPR since 2014, with the Committee thereafter asking the Swiss State party questions on intersex and IGM in its List of Issues Prior to Reporting (LoIPR) under para 22. In their (non-)reply, Switzerland brought up the usual denial + pinkwashing in the State report (para 188).

During the 1st part of the State examination in Geneva on 03 July, Committee expert Christof Heyns therafter inquired about Switzerland's position in the matter, with the Delegation (non-)replying with more of the same, repeatedly changing the topic to discrimination issues and "sex change in documents". StopIGM.org is now hoping for follow-up questions in the 2nd Q&A session today ...

UPDATE!   Committee expert Yuval Shany asked a follow-up question about practical steps to raise awareness, prevent practice and guarantee rehabilitation for victims ...The Delegation again insisted doctors would allegedly rrespect the right to self-determination and physical and mental integrity of intersex persons, then went on about "sexual reassignment" ... Full transcripts to follow.

>>> UN Press release english | français – both mention intersex
>>> Video Session 1
| Session 2 

NGO Report to the 4th Periodic Report of Switzerland on the  International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR)

>>> Download as PDF (809 kb)

Compiled by:
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org
Intersex.ch
SI Selbsthilfe Intersexualität

Timetable CCPR120 Review of Switzerland July 2017:
• NGO Briefing Switzerland (closed):
Mon 3 July 
• NGO Lunchtime Briefing (closed):
Mon 3 July
• Review of Switzerland: Mon 3 July 15-17h + Tue 4 July 10-13h CET
  
to be transmitted live on webtv.un.org!
The Concluding Observations for Switzerland, hopefully with a severe reprimand for IGM practices, are due at the end the 120th CCPR Session of the Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) on 28 July 2017 (or soon after).

CEDAW67 Italy

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookItaly is once more up for review of IGM practices at the 67th session of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). StopIGM.org in Collaboration with Italian intersex advocate Claudia Balsamo have documented the ongoing practice in Italian clinics and the complicity of the State in a thematic NGO report and are now hoping for tough questions on IGM for Italy during the State review today ...
>>> VIDEO + TRANSCRIPT: Italy Questioned over IGM

UPDATE 1: The testimony by Claudia Balsamo has been mentioned in the french + english UN press release:

«A representative of StopIGM.org provided the testimony of a person exposed to intersex genital mutilation as a child and said that all forms of intersex genital mutilation persisted in Italy, paid for by the State.  Doctors openly boasted in the media about a large increase in surgeries, while the national institutions openly advocated the practice.  Italy still failed to explicitly prohibit by law and adequately sanction or criminalize the practice.»

UPDATE 2: You can also hear the full statement on the now archived >>> video (starting at 9:10 min).

UPDATE 3: Literally in the very last minutes, Committe expert Patrizia Schulz asks about non-consensual surgeries on intersex children! Does the Stae party plan to ban this harmful practice? The Delegation issues a full denial, claiming only medically necessary surgeries would take place, although there is no recent data available. Patrizia Schulz quickly follows up, parents can not consent. Full transcripts to follow

>>> Video Session 2 (starting at 1:58)  

2017 CEDAW Italy NGO Intersex IGM

NGO Report to the 7th Report of Italy on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)

>>>  Download (PDF 650 kb)

 
Compiled by:
Claudia Balsamo
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

Timetable CEDAW67 Review of Italy July 2017:
• NGO Briefing Italy (public): Mon 3 July 15:00-16:15h CET 
   to be transmitted live on webtv.un.org!
• NGO Lunchtime Briefing (closed):
Mon 3 July
• Review of Italy: Tue 4 July 10-13h + 15-17h CET
   to be transmitted live on webtv.un.org!

The Concluding Observations for Italy, hopefully with another severe reprimand for IGM practices, are due at the end the 66th CEDAW Session (24 July 2017 or soon after).

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condemn IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Saturday 1 July 2017

Open Letter to '6th I-D$D 2017', 'D$Dnet', 'eUROG€N', 'Endo-€RN', 'D$D-Life', Danish & international D$D Clinics, and Affiliates

Nonviolent Intersex Protest #1 vs. '6th I-DSD' @ Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen 29.06.2017

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

On occasion of the '6th I-DSD Symposium 2017', the international human rights NGO StopIGM.org delivered an
>>> Open Letter (PDF) by Persons Concerned, Partners, Families, Friends and Allies
with 92 101 signatories to 'I-DSD', 'DSDnet', 'eUROGEN', 'Endo-ERN', 'DSD-Life' and Affiliates including 115 EU-funded IGM clinics in 27 countries.

The letter contains up-to-date references to international human rights bodies including the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC), the UN Committee against Torture (CAT), the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) condemning involuntary, non-urgent procedures on children with variations of sex anatomy as serious human rights violations amounting to “harmful cultural practices” (like FGM) or “inhuman treatment” punishable as torture, and currently having issued 25 reprimands to 16 State parties in Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and Oceania, as well as to recent legislative efforts to criminalise or adequately sanction the practice.

The 92 101 signatories kindly ask DSD clinicians, institutions and affiliates to reconsider involuntary, non-urgent treatments of children with variations of sex anatomy and to to initiate a process of coming to terms with the past as a necessary first step towards reconciliation.

You can find the full text of the Open Letter online here:
http://StopIGM.org/public/Open_Letter_I-DSD_Copenhagen_2017.pdf

Thanks to everybody who signed and/or supported the protests!

See you where the action is!

Copenhagen: Nonviolent Intersex Protests + Info 29.06.-01.07.2017
    vs. “I-D$D 2017” • ”Rigshospitalet” • “D$Dnet” • “eUROGEN” • “Endo-ERN” • “D$D-Life”

>>> “I-D$D 2017” Opening Lecture: Stuck with torturing intersex children
>>> “D$D-Life” as a typical example illustrating the ‘Global IGM Cartel’  

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Thursday 22 June 2017

Intersex Torture @ 'I-D$D 2017': "This completely antagonizes the medical community" (Eric Vilain)

UPDATE: I was able to see the last slides of Eric Vilain's actual ’I-DSD 2017’ presentation, including the one addressing possible prohibition of IGM, and I'm happy to report that the issue was dealt with rather matter-of-factly, with Eric Vilain stating that he was expecting prohibition to come, although he wished it wouldn't.

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookCopenhagen 29.06.-01.07.2017:
Nonviolent Intersex Protests + Info
vs. “I-D$D 2017” • ”Rigshospitalet” • “D$Dnet”
• “eUROGEN” • “Endo-ERN” • “D$D-Life”

"Setting the Scene": Professor Eric Vilain (geneticist for all things D$D at University of California Los Angeles UCLA) has been appointed to deliver the opening lecture of '6th I-D$D 2017' (with Prof Anders Juul, Department of Growth and Reproduction at The Juliane Marie Centre, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen University Hospital, acting as Chair):

«By equating surgery with torture, some doctors argue, activists are further tying the hands of a medical community that is trying to act in their patients' best interest carry on mutilating intersex children for scientific 'progress'.

"This completely antagonizes the medical community. This is not progress, in my opinion," Eric Vilain, professor of human genetics and pediatrics at UCLA, told [...]. "It's a tactic that's likely to work, and it's a tactic that will prevent us from actually understanding what's going on carrying on mutilating intersex children for scientific 'progress'." »

Eric "Crybaby" Vilain 

There, fixed that for ya.

The title of Eric Vilain's “I-D$D 2017” opening lecture, “Stuck in the Middle”, had already been used for a 2016 portrait in the print version of “Nature” (PDF), with Vilain and fellow D$D doc David Sandberg still whining on about unfair, unfair human rights bodies and evil, evil activists “alienating” IGM perpetrators, “scaring” parents and “driving infant surgery underground”:   

«In January, the United Nations released a report saying that sex-assignment surgeries on infants “lead to severe and life-long physical and mental pain and suffering and can amount to torture and ill-treatment”. Vilain and Sandberg worry that the language could alienate doctors and parents alike. “You're basically calling doctors torturers when they're doing something considered standard medical practice,” Vilain says. He points out that few medical procedures are governed by law — physicians tend to operate according to guidelines and principles. “I'm not opposed to guidelines, I'm opposed to things that completely alter medical practice prevent medical crimes on intersex children in an irreversible way,” he says. He and Sandberg also worry that legal bans could drive infant surgery underground. “Parents are scared. You just don't dictate to them and say get over it,” Sandberg says.»

«Yet Vilain's experiences with patient advocates have hardened him somewhat. “I call the ones who work with us advocates; those against us activists,” he says. He remains driven by questions about sex, even if it kicks up dust. “We're trying to listen to the community, but by the same token we're committed to producing data and evidence carrying on with criminal human experimentation on intersex children for scientific 'progress'.”»

Eric "I'm not a torturer" Vilain 

Please help reminding Eric Vilain and fellow IGM perps and accomplices in Copenhagen and everywhere that it is NOT OK to mutilate defenceless children!

Copenhagen: Nonviolent Intersex Protests + Info 29.06.-01.07.2017
    vs. “I-D$D 2017” • ”Rigshospitalet” • “D$Dnet” • “eUROGEN” • “Endo-ERN” • “D$D-Life”

23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Wednesday 21 June 2017

IGM Primer #2: The Global Cartel - Endocrinologists & Surgeons in Charge - Ethics & Psychology as Fig Leaf - Gov Approved - 'D$D-Life'

Copenhagen: Nonviolent Intersex Protests + Info 29.06.-01.07.2017
    vs. “I-D$D 2017” • ”Rigshospitalet” • “D$Dnet” • “eUROGEN” • “Endo-ERN” • “D$D-Life”

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook Unfortunately still bears repeating (8):

Also at the multi-million EU perpetrator's 'research' project 'DSD-Life', persons concerned and their organisations are 'consulted' by name only, while the usual perpetrators themselves in 14 IGM clinics in 6 European countries are handsomely paid to 'investigate' their very own handiwork:

 Click to enlarge!
"DSD-Life": 6 Million Euros for IGM Perpetrators' 'Research' incl. 'Ethics Band Aid'
“Multidisciplinary Teams” =
Pedo Endos
('PädEndo') + Surgeons ('Chirurgie')
= Same since Beginning of Systematic Intersex Genital Mutilations in 1950

>>> EU: Biggest funder of IGM - how much longer?!

>>> IGM Global, Inc.: Why we are targetting the '9th Joint Meeting' 

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy

2014 NGO Report to the UN Committe on the Rights of the Child (CRC)
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>>
Table of Contents  

STOP IGM Primer:
What everyone should know about Intersex Genital Mutilations (IGMs)!

>>> Download (PDF, 1.95 MB) 

Tuesday 20 June 2017

URGENT Call to sign Open Letter to I-DSD + Associated Intersex Genital Mutilators

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookDear fellow campaigners, friends and allies

In 2016, Denmark has been reprimanded by the UN Committee against Torture for allowing Intersex Genital Mutilations to continue with impunity. Nonetheless, the daily mutilations continue, and next week IGM doctors from allover will flock to the Rigshospitalet Copenhagen for the '6th I-DSD Symposium 2017' (More info + all the dates see here).

Therefore, we are going to hand in another Open Letter to participating and affiliated doctors, medical and 'research' organisations, DSD Clinics, Universites, Government and other public bodies on occasion of peaceful protests, and ask everybody to sign it.
You can find the draft of the Open Letter (PDF) online here:
http://StopIGM.org/public/DRAFT_Open_Letter_I-DSD_Copenhagen_2017.pdf

How to sign:

Please send us an email to daniela.truffer_at_gmx.ch (replace _at_ by @) with your:
  - name,
  - city,
  - country, and
  - organisation (if applicable)
so we can add your name to the list of signatories in the Open Letter!

(In case you want to sign the letter not on behalf of your organisation, but in personal capacity, just add something like 'Personal Capacity, Affiliation given for identification purposes only' behind your name and organisation, and we'll add this in the letter.)

Please spread this invitation to other parties and individuals concerned. So there will be as many signatures as possible.

Please respond quickly! Thanks for adding your signature to let the doctors know that it's NOT OK to cosmetically alter intersex children's genitals!

Kind regards

Daniela "Nella" Truffer, Markus Bauer
Founding members human rights NGO StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org
Mobile +41 (0) 76 398 06 50

http://StopIGM.org 

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookCopenhagen 29.06.-01.07.2017:
Nonviolent Intersex Protests + Info
vs. “I-D$D 2017” • ”Rigshospitalet” • “D$Dnet”
• “eUROGEN” • “Endo-ERN” • “D$D-Life”

>>> “I-D$D 2017” Opening Lecture: Stuck with torturing intersex children
>>> “D$D-Life” as a typical example illustrating the ‘Global IGM Cartel’  

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Monday 19 June 2017

Copenhagen > Nonviolent Intersex Protests 29.06.-01.07. + Info 29.06. vs. "I-D$D 2017" + Rigshospitalet + University of Copenhagen

Photo: Glasgow, 09.06.2013: Nonviolent Intersex Protest #7 vs. '4th I-DSD Symposium' | Open Letter (PDF) 

Heidi Walcutt (1997): 'STOP Intersex Genital Mutilation'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookYIKES!! Intersex Genital Mutilators from all over will gather for the “6th International DSD Symposium” a.k.a. “I-D$D 2017” at the “Rigshospitalet” of the University of Copenhagen, co-organised by “UK Medical Research Council (MRC)” and “D$Dnet”,
also featuring “eUROGEN”, “Endo-ERN” and “D$D-Life”.

StopIGM.org will confront them all with nonviolent protests and an Open Letter, and denounce their human rights violations.

Please help reminding IGM perpetrators and accessories that it is NOT OK to mutilate defenceless children!

INFO: Thur 29.06.2017 19h @ Amnesty International Denmark
Gammeltorv 8, 4. Sal | 4th Floor • 1457 København K

"Intersex Genital Mutilations and Human Rights" 

7 PEACEFUL VIGILS + OPEN LETTERS: Thurs 29.06. – Sat 01.07.
"STOP Intersex Genital Mutilations!"

Thursday 29.06.2017
#1: 08:30-16:30   Rigshospitalet (main entrance) "I-DSD 2017"
      Rigshospitalet, Blegdamsvej 9, 2100 Copenhagen
#2: 16:45-18:15   "I-DSD 2017" (Rigshospitalet entrance 44, Auditorium 1+2)
      Rigshospitalet, Juliane Maries vej, 2100 Copenhagen

Friday 30.06.2017
#3: 08:30-10:30   Juliane Marie Centret (main entrance)
      Rigshospitalet, Juliane Maries vej, Copenhagen
#4: 10:45-13:45   Medical Faculty @ Panum Building (main entrance)
      University of Copenhagen, Panum Building, Blegdamsvej 3B, 2200 Copenhagen
#5: 14:00-18:00   Rigshospitalet (main entrance) "I-DSD 2017"
      Rigshospitalet, Blegdamsvej 9, 2100 Copenhagen

Saturday 01.07.2017
#6: 08:00-12:00   Rigshospitalet (main entrance) "I-DSD 2017"
      Rigshospitalet, Blegdamsvej 9, 2100 Copenhagen
#7: 12:15-13:15   "I-DSD 2017" (Rigshospitalet entrance 44, Auditorium 1+2)
      Rigshospitalet, Juliane Maries vej, 2100 Copenhagen

>>> “I-D$D 2017” Opening Lecture: Stuck with torturing intersex children
>>> “D$D-Life” as a typical example illustrating the ‘Global IGM Cartel’  

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights in Geneva 26.–27.10.2015
>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 18 June 2017

CESCR61 > Australia Questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations – Gov Denies

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'Australia is currently up for review of Intersex Genital Mutilation at the 60th session of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) in Geneva. OII Australia has participated in a Joint submission to the Committee, raising IGM practices.

On March 31, the Committe questioned Australia on IGM, with the Government as per usual either denying or defending the practice, and "mistaking" intersex for transgender (pinkwashing).

The following is what was mentioned on IGM in the official UN Summary records:

«22. Mr. Uprimny (Task Force Member) said that he would like to know whether the forced sterilization of persons with disabilities was allowed if consent was given not by the person concerned but by a surrogate. He asked what the Government’s policy was regarding non-consensual genital surgery for intersex individuals and whether such surgery could be performed with surrogate consent.»

«34. [Mr. Walter (Australia) said that] The treatment of intersex children was typically carried out in two stages: firstly, the administration of hormones to suppress the advancement of puberty in the gender of birth and, secondly, the administration of hormones to promote the affirmed gender. Authorization from the Family Court was required for stage 2 but not for stage 1. The third stage, namely surgery, was not usually considered for minors. The number of applications to the Family Court had risen from 5 in 2013 to 23 in 2016. The Government was conscious of the fact that requiring judicial authorization could delay treatment and lead to depression, suicidal thoughts and self-harm and was, therefore, looking into possible reforms. In that connection, a number of recent Family Court decisions concerning treatment for intersex children were under review by the Government.»

Usually, the Summary records are fragmentary at best, and unfortunately so far there is no actual transcription of the Intersex Q&A available.

According to tweets by People with Disability Australia Inc. (PWDA) who were present in Geneva, the Australian Gov in addition openly confirmed they're not willing to implement the recommendations of the Senate inquiries on involuntary sterislisation of intersex people.

So, hopefully the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) will issue strong Concluding Observations on IGM for Australia.

CESCR has already explicitly condemned IGM practices in their General comment No. 22 (2016) on the right to sexual and reproductive health:

«59. Violations of the obligation to protect occur when a State fails to take effective steps to prevent third parties from undermining the enjoyment of the right to sexual and reproductive health. This includes the failure to prohibit and take measures to prevent all forms of violence and coercion committed by private individuals and entities, including domestic violence, rape (including marital rape), sexual assault, abuse and harassment, including during conflict, post-conflict and transition situations; violence targeting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons or women seeking abortion or post-abortion care; harmful practices such as female genital mutilation, child and forced marriage, forced sterilization, forced abortion and forced pregnancy; and medically unnecessary, irreversible and involuntary surgery and treatment performed on intersex infants or children.»

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 4 June 2017

Amnesty Report fails Intersex Children and IGM Survivors

IGM = Mutilation, NOT ‘Controversy’ or ‘Debate’!UPDATE 2: We received a 2nd reply by Amnesty London (fulltext). Apparently now it's just a case of bad “wording” having “created confusion”, and “clarify[ing]” that Amnesty “are not opposing any such laws [calling for criminalisation of IGM]”, however any call to do so would be “complicated by the fact that in many cases clinicians argue that interventions are 'medically necessary'”. More intersex advocates have criticised Amnesty's doctor-friendly answer and lack of acknowledging the political intersex consensus and relevant UN findings, and, where allowed to do so by local Amnesty sections, renewed calls for prohibition. We support these calls in our 2nd reply (fulltext) and ask, “when and how will Amnesty make this clarified position public?”  To be continued ...

UPDATE! We received a reply by Amnesty (fulltext). The most salient bit reads: “However, [Amnesty] do[es] not call for a ban on surgeries. This is in line with our broader human rights work on issues related to gender and sexuality. We are calling for a rights-based approach to medical practice and based on our research into this issue, we are not confident that criminalising such surgeries would achieve this.” We (and others) are now calling upon Amnesty (fulltext) to disclose said policy “related to gender and sexuality” as well as said research showing why criminalisation would allegedly not be effective to end IGM and the impunity of the perpetrators, and to ensure access to justice to survivors. To be continued ...

Photo: Ditte Dyreborg (Danish Intersex Advocate), Daniela Truffer, Markus Bauer (StopIGM.org),
Small Luk (BBKCI Hong Kong) after Denmark Intersex NGO Briefing for CAT, Palais Wilson 13.11.2015

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookPress Release by StopIGM.org, 12.05.2017:

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

As an international intersex human rights NGO with German and Danish members and associates and instrumental in achieving so far 22 UN reprimands for intersex genital mutilations (IGM), including to Germany and Denmark, StopIGM.org warmly welcomes Amnesty International highlighting human rights violations of intersex people in their new report "First, do no harm. Ensuring the Rights of Children with Variations of Sex Characteristics in Denmark and Germany" (PDF). However, StopIGM.org remains deeply concerned that said Amnesty report
  • fails to demand legal prohibition of IGM practices, thus falling short of demands of intersex people (e.g. Malta declaration) and UN treaty bodies (CRC, CAT, CEDAW, CRPD)
  • fails to adequately consider the most important human rights violations and applicable human rights frameworks at stake, namely harmful practices (CRC art. 24.3, CEDAW art. 5, CEDAW/CRC Joint General Comment 31/18), torture or inhuman treatment (CAT art. 2, 12, 14, 16), and CRPD, CCPR
  • fails to adequately consult intersex people, particularly IGM survivors and their organisations
  • fails to recognise that intersex and IGM are NOT an LGBT, discrimination or healthcare issue, BUT CONSTITUTE genital mutilation, a harmful practice, inhuman treatment, torture …

StopIGM.org thus would like to kindly remind Amnesty International of two crucial UN verdicts, unfortunately both omitted in said Amnesty report:

  • The Committee against Torture (CAT) explicitly obliged Denmark to "Take the necessary legislative, administrative and other measures to guarantee the respect for the physical integrity and autonomy of intersex persons and ensure that no one is subjected during infancy or childhood to unnecessary medical or surgical procedures" (CAT/C/DNK/CO/6-7, para 43 (a), 04.02.2016)
  • The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) explicitly obliged Germany to "Adopt clear legislative provisions explicitly prohibiting the performance of unnecessary surgical or other medical treatment on intersex children" and "Ensure effective access to justice, including by amending the statute of limitations" (CEDAW/C/DEU/CO/7-8, para 24 (d+e), 03.03.2017)

Legislation to end IGM practices remains the most urgent intersex demand. Failing to adequately include it, but instead recommending legislation only regarding "discrimination" and "legal gender recognition" while at the same time leaving the prevention of IGM to "healthcare providers" and the "Ministry of Health" as proposed in said Amnesty report, inevitably prolongs the impunity of IGM perpetrators and accessories, and grossly fails intersex children and IGM survivors.

Amnesty International must do better in the future, including by adequately consulting IGM survivors and their organisations.

StopIGM.org demands the prohibition of forced genital surgeries on children and adolescents with Variations of Sex Anatomy and “Human Rights for Hermaphrodites too!”

Persons concerned shall later decide themselves, if they want surgeries or not, and if yes, which.

Kind regards

Daniela "Nella" Truffer, Markus Bauer
Founding members human rights NGO Zwischengeschlecht.org / StopIGM.org

Mobile +41 (0) 76 398 06 50
Mobile +41 (0) 78 829 12 60

presse_at_zwischengeschlecht.info

http://StopIGM.org

http://intersex.shadowreport.org

>>> ANSWERS see documented below in Comments

2016 CRC Denmark NGO Report Intersex IGM

IGM Practices in Denmark: 2016 CRC Report
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Denmark  Complicity of the State  Harmful Practice
>>> Download as a PDF (633 kb)

2016-CEDAW-Swiss-Intersex-IGM

IGM Practices in Germany: 2017 CEDAW Report
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Germany  Complicity of the State  Harmful Practice
>>> Download as PDF (519 kb)

See also:

23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Saturday 3 June 2017

Trans persons posing as intersex (and the damage they do to intersex rights)

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook Intersex: No Reckoning, No Reconciliation! Trans persons claiming they're intersex for personal gain and comfort, and both the short and long-term harm they're inflicting to intersex self-help groups and the intersex human rights movement, is a longstanding and painful issue often ignored or trivialised also by some intersex people and their organisations (in my experience often those who weren't submitted to IGM as children).

A 2012 article by Peggy Cadet & Marc D. Feldman, "Pretense of a Paradox: Factitious Intersex Conditions on the Internet", International Journal of Sexual Health (Vol 24, No 2, p. 91-96  >>> tandonline  >>> academia) captures the issue wellguess why also this article is mostly "overlooked" and seldom quoted ...

For those who don't have free access to the paywall-article, here's some of the most salient bits (p. 94):

"During 15 years of involvement in intersex support groups, the first author has frequently observed very detrimental effects of intersex posers on peer-group support and information for actual intersexed persons. They often report extremely rare or nonexistent conditions and/or prolonged and fruitless attempts to obtain a diagnosis. Their false, but often dramatic, stories misinform and often attract a disproportionate share of attention. They use up the time and effort of persons seeking to help others, often getting them to make a significant emotional investment, then leave them disillusioned. Others, seeking help and information, become distrustful after realizing they have been misled. The end result is that potentially valuable mutual support services become unavailable."

"Misinformation spread by intersex posers is not only harmful in the short term to their immediate contacts, but also—when incorporated into sources such as books, video documentaries, and in-person talks—the misinformation influences long-term treatment protocols for the intersexed. Researchers in psychology and related disciplines should be aware that information from some claimed intersex persons is fabricated and misleading."

"Persons with factitious intersex conditions often claim the authority of experience on intersex issues and use their alleged conditions as a credential, but then they disingenuously insist that verifying the credential would be an invasion of privacy. They may invoke policies and laws regarding medical privacy, though these do not preclude the patient herself from sharing documentation or giving permission for it to be released."

Thank you Peggy Cadet and Marc Feldman!

Instrumentalising intersex is NOT a victimless crime!

Saturday 27 May 2017

BBC > VIDEO: Bearing Witness to Intersex Genital Mutilations

"I've got an 8in [20cm] scar right across my stomach. I was feeling perfectly healthy
and I can remember sitting up in bed, thinking, 'What the hell am I doing here?'"

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook Intersex: No Reckoning, No Reconciliation! >>> Powerful BBC News Article + 3 min. VIDEO featuring 71 years old IGM survivor Jeanette from the UK, bravely explaining how at age 16 without her knowledge her “hidden testes” were removed (= IGM 3: Sterilising procedures), how doctors systematically lied to her most of her life (which is another typical pattern in IGM practices), and talks openly about the desastrous consequences of all this for her life (recognised to amounting to lifelong severe pain and suffering by multiple UN Committees, with the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) condemning IGM in the UK as a “harmful practice”, just like FGM).

The BBC article also includes further excellent statements by persons concerned from UK organisations Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Support Group (AISSG) and Intersex UK.

From this blog a big heartfelt thank-you to Jeanette for her brave testinomy, and to everbody involved for a brilliant example of bearing witness to IGM done right!

>>> Genital mutilation on the NHS: UK reprimanded by UN-CRC
>>>
That's why the UK is reprimanded for Intersex Genital Mutilations by UN

Intersex Genital Mutilations in the UK: 2016 UN-CRC Report 
Human Rights Violations Of Persons With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Most Common Forms  What is Intersex?  A Harmful Practice
>
>>  Download (PDF 3.60 MB) 

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices –  Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Wednesday 17 May 2017

OUCH!! UN Press Release calls IGM "sex alignment surgeries", IGM survivors "transsexual children"! Guess why :-(

UPDATE: Unfortunately, also the Concluding observations for Argentina by the Committee against Torture did NOT raise intersex or IGM, marking already the 2nd consecutive no-show in CAT recommendations (after Finland in CAT59)!
Intersex Appropriation
Is NOT A Victimless Crime!

“Intersex is NOT THE SAME as LGBT or SOGI
Unfortunately, there are several harmful misconceptions about intersex still prevailing in public, notably if intersex is counterfactually described as being the same as or a subset of LGBT or SOGI, e.g. […] as the same as transsexuality […].
[…] IGM practices present a distinct and unique issue constituting significant human rights violations, which are different from those faced by the LGBT community, and thus need to be adequately addressed in a separate section as specific intersex issues.”

2017 CAT60 Intersex NGO Report Argentina (PDF), p. 7
  

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Usually, the precis writers at the UN typing up the meeting summaries also used for the UN press releases are quite knowledgeable about IGM. However, there are also exceptions to this rule, and then the above mentioned harmful misconceptions about intersex and IGM hit even more painful and often also more damaging than the usual endless barrage of misrepresentation of intersex and wilful instrumentalisation of the suffering of IGM victims for 3rd party interests dominating our everyday lives.

Unfortunately, both (!!) the English and the French UN press release issued after the review of Argentina during the 60th CAT session turned out to be such exceptions, wich regrettably seem to be on the rise.

While the >>> English UN press release at least mentioned that it's about intersex people, it nonetheless always erroneously calls IGM “sex alignment surgeries” (i.e. voluntary procedures on transsexual or transgender persons) – despite that this fallacious term was NEVER brought up by neither the CAT expert nor by the delegation (compare full transcript of CAT60 Argentina intersex Q&A):

Committee against Torture reviews report of Argentina

Follow-up Questions

[...]

KENING ZHANG, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur for Argentina, expressed concern about sex alignment surgeries performed on intersex persons without their consent, as such practices amounted to acts of torture. [...]

Responses by the Delegation

[...]

With regard to sex alignment surgeries on intersex persons, the delegation stressed that everyone in Argentina had the right to body integrity and sovereignty, including intersex persons.  In the law, a child under age of 13 was represented by a legal representative; children aged between 13 and 16 had the right to be involved in any legal procedures involving them and in any procedures involving their body.  They were considered adults in matters of their own bodies from the age of 16.  Consent of the person in question or his or her legal representative was required for a surgery to take place.  The best interest of the child was the leading principle. [...]”

Even worse, the >>> French UN Press Release not only wrongly introduces intersex NGOs Justicia Intersex and StopIGM.org as “a group of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender and intersex victims of discrimination and violence”, but on top continuously describes IGM as “surgical interventions on transsexual [!!!] children” :

“Le Comité contre la Torture examine le rapport de l'Argentine

Examen du rapport

Questions et observations des membres du Comité

[...]

Le corapporteur a par la suite indiqué avoir été approché par un groupe de lesbiennes, gays, bisexuels, transgenres et intersexués victimes de discrimination et de violences en Argentine. Le groupe recommande à cet égard l’interdiction des interventions chirurgicales sur les enfants transsexuels jusqu’à ce qu’ils aient atteint l’âge de pouvoir décider eux-mêmes de leur sexe et demande que des indemnisations soient accordées aux personnes victimes de telles interventions sans leur consentement.

[...]

Réponses de la délégation

[...]

La délégation a d’autre part souligné que le Ministère de la justice avait pris des mesures pour répondre aux besoins spécifiques des personnes transsexuelles emprisonnées.  S’agissant des opérations chirurgicales sur des personnes transsexuelles, il a été précisé que les personnes mineures (âgées de 3 à 16 ans) sont toujours entendues dans les procédures qui les concernent.  Un acte de chirurgie doit être validé par le tuteur légal ou par un juge, le cas échéant, et l’Argentine garantit à toute personne le droit de s’identifier au genre de son choix, a assuré la délégation. [...]”

UPDATE: Unfortunately, also the Concluding observations for Argentina by the Committee against Torture did NOT raise intersex or IGM, marking already the 2nd consecutive no-show in CAT recommendations (after Finland in CAT59)!

Intersex Appropriation Is NOT A Victimless Crime!

How much longer?!

IGM Practices in Argentina: 2017 CAT Report
Human Rights Violations Of Persons With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM in Argentina  Complicity of the State  IGM as Inhuman Treatment
>>>  Download (PDF 267 kb)

>>> NGO Statement 25.04.2017 on IGM in Argentina by Justicia Intersex, StopIGM.org 

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM

UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

IGM as a Harmful Practice: 2015 UN-CRC Briefing
• IGM: A Survivor's Perspective • Intersex Movement History
• What are Variations of Sex Anatomy?  • What are IGM Practices?
• IGM and Human Rights  • Conclusion: IGM as a Harmful Practice
>>> Download PDF (3.14 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices –  Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 14 May 2017

There we go (2): France condemns "mutilations of intersex children", proposes "prohibition"

Heidi Walcutt (1997): 'STOP Intersex Genital Mutilation'

Hear, hear! In December 2016, the French “Interministerial delegation on combatting racism, anti-semitism and anti-LGBT hatred (DILCRAH)” published a “Mobilisation plan against anti-LGBT hatred and discrimination” (PDF, french), which on p. 25 also included a strong statement on Intersex Genital Mutilations, referring to the recent UN reprimands to France secured in collaboration by StopIGM.org and French intersex advocates Vincent Guillot and Nadine Coquet (our translation):

«Stopping the surgeries and mutilations of intersex children

In 2016, France has been reprimanded three times for this issue by the UN: In January by the Committee on the Rights of the Child, in May by the Committee against Torture, and in July by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. Unless they are not imperative for medical reasons, these surgeries are mutilations and must stop.»

And when presenting the Mobilisation plan at the French government palace on 17 March, outgoing French president François Hollande did even one better by openly proposing a legal ban of IGM, earning him the biggest spontaneous applause of the whole presentation (video in french @ 12:09, our translation):

«I'm also thinking of the prohibition of surgical operations that intersex children are submitted to today, and which around the world are largely considered as mutilations.»

This strong statement by president Hollande was also highlighted in the French media, for example by “Yagg” (in french), and “Libération” even put it in the headline of their report (in french). 

These are wonderful news from France! StopIGM.org extends a heartfelt thank-you to everyone who made this possible, to all who put their hands together for the remarkable applause during Hollande's presentation, and to  Benjamin Moron-Puech for impeccably chronicling these developments (in french: one | two)!

Unfortunately, this still doesn't mean all is well for intersex children in France: So far these strong statements are only words on paper and video still waiting to be translated into actual legislation, while the daily mutilations still continue. And there are also less positive official statements emerging from France, for example by the French Human Rights Defender (“Défenseur des droits”), who in a recent statement proposed (of all things!) the IGM perpetrators themselves should be tasked to investigate the situation (StopIGM.org reported, in french), or the lengthy recent report by the French “Senate delegation on women's rights”, which leaves open a lot of questions (some of them addressed here in french) and regrettably seems to go down the same road as the German Ethics Council who in the end blocked out IGM survivors and their organisations in favour of IGM perpetrators and organised parents hellbent on submitting their intersex children to IGM … How much longer?!

“Let me give you a word of the philosophy of reform. The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims have been born of earnest struggle. [...] If there is no struggle there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning. […] Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.
– Frederick Douglass
, abolitionist and former slave, 3 August 1857

>>> There we go (1): EU condemns IGM, calls "to prevent, ban and prosecute"

See also:

23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Intersex Genital Mutilations in France: 2015 CRC Report 
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Most Common Forms  What is Intersex?  Harmful Practice
>>>  Download (PDF 3.41 MB)

UN-CRC réprimande la France: MGI = "Pratique Préjudiciable" + "Violence"
 La Ministre Bloque et Detourne - Transcriptions des Questions et Réponses MGI  

Intersex Genital Mutilations in France: 2016 CAT Report 
Human Rights Violations Of Persons With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Most Common Forms  What is Intersex?  Inhuman Treatment
>>>  Download (PDF 3.71 MB)

UN-CAT réprimande la France: MGI = "Traitement Inhumain" + "Torture"
Le Comité de l' ONU contre la Torture questionne la France sur les MGI - Transcriptions

2016 CEDAW France NGO Intersex IGM

Intersex Genital Mutilations in France: 2016 CEDAW Report 
Human Rights Violations Of Persons With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Most Common Forms  What is Intersex?  Harmful Practice
>>>  Download (PDF 2.69 MB)

UN-CEDAW réprimande la France – pour la 3e fois: MGI = “Pratique préjudiciable” 
Transcription: La France questionnée sur les Mutilations Génitales Intersexes par CEDAW

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

Sunday 30 April 2017

CAT60 > VIDEO + TRANSCRIPT: Argentina Questioned over Intersex Genital Mutilations by UN Committee Against Torture – Gov Denies

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook >>> NGO statement on Intersex Genital Mutilations, 25.04.2017
>>>
CAT Timeline Argentina 2017 

UN-CAT 60th Session @ Palais Wilson 26.04.2017, 09:58h CET: Getting ready ...
Far right: CAT rapporteur Kening Zhang, who raised intersex in Session 2 (27.04.2017)
Rear corner (far left on podium): Maria Gabriela Quinteros, who (non)-answered
#CATArgentina   #UNCAT60   #NomasTorturaARG

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'

Zwischengeschlecht.org on FacebookArgentina is currently up for review of IGM practices at the 60th session of the UN Committee against Torture (CAT) on
Wed 26 April 10:00-13:00h CET + Thu 27. April 15:00-18:00h.

The Session was streamed live (english + original):
Session 1 |
Session 2 ... and on Facebook (spanish).

StopIGM.org reported LIVE from Palais Wilson, hoping for strong questions on IGM practices:

CAT 60 Argentina Intersex Q&A: Transcript + Video
>>> Original Full Report Sessions 1 + 2 

Session 2, Thu 27.04.2017, 15–18h CET

16:57h: (Video @ 1:56:52–2:00:02) YAY!!    CAT country co-rapporteur Kening Zhang raises intersex persons and IGM, quotes our suggested recommendations! (NGO Report PDF --> p. 18) :-)
Unofficial Transcript:

«I noticed that the director for human rights of the foreign ministry touched on the issue of also LGBTI. In that regard I would like to have the opportunity of passing a message of a NGO which I didn't have time to do yesterday. I was approached by this intersex genital mutilation group which actually expressed their concern over the certain status how they are being treated in the country, and I would like just to very briefly read out what they entrusted me to do.

They expressed the concern then they suggest that the Committee (indiscernible) the following recommendations to the country for their better treatment, for the unnecessary surgical and other interventions performed on intersex performed on intersex people without prior informed and effective consent, which reportedly caused physical and psychological suffering, have not as yet given rise to any inquiry, sanction or reparation.

The Committee, so they suggest the Committee to recommend to the State party the following:

(a) Take the necessary legislative, administrative and other measures to guarantee the respect for the physical integrity and autonomy of intersex persons and to ensure that no one is subjected to unnecessary medical or surgical procedures during infancy or childhood, but that all non-urgent medical interventions are postponed until the child is sufficiently mature to participate in decision-making and give full, free and informed consent.

(b) Guarantee impartial counselling services and psychosocial support for all intersex children and their parents, so as to inform them of the consequences of non-urgent, unnecessary surgery and other medical treatment and the possibility of postponing any decision on such treatment or surgery until the persons concerned are able to decide for themselves.

(c) Undertake investigation of reports of surgical and other medical treatment of intersex people without effective consent and adopt legal provisions in order to provide redress to the victims of such treatment, including adequate compensation.

(d) Guarantee intersex persons’ full access to the right to identity and to be recognized as a person before the law through administrative procedures fully compatible with human rights standards.

And the last

(e) Involve intersex persons in the design, implementation and monitoring of public policies affecting them, and avoid all forms of misrepresentation and instrumentalisation of intersex persons and issues.»

17:37h: (Video english | castellano @ 2:36:25–2:40:20) Maria Gabriela Quinteros (Human Rights Director of the Foreign Affairs Office: Sub Directora de Derechos Humanos, Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores y Culto de Argentina) (non-)answers on intersex! – With the customary pinkwashing on top, she claimed the civil code prevents IGM and affirms right to bodily integrity and autonomy, intersex children protected until 16 years, then count as adults regarding medical decisions. Gender identity law is clear that they can identify as male or female without surgery. (However, those laws are simply not applied to intersex children, see NGO Report PDF --> p. 8, 14). She conveniently ignores that IGM is still advertised and perpetrated by government bodies and public paediatric hospitals ... :-(
Unofficial transcription
(of UN simultanious translation from original spanish):

«OK, I'd like to answer Dr. Zhang regarding the concern he raised passing on the message from an NGO concerned about interventions vis-à-vis intersex persons. In the first place I'd like to say that intersex individuals have the right to self-determination over their own bodies, and must give prior and informed consent as a fundamental prerequisite for any medical practice which might be carried out on their body.

There have been two important legislative advances in this area in Argentina, and one is the new Civil and Commercial Code of the nation which in its article 26 says that any child, any minor, because quite often with this intersex cases we're generally speaking dealing with minors, and this is how we establish whether or not to intervene surgically. This article says that the persons rights ought to be exercised through their legal representatives, but nonetheless it allows - if the person has the appropriate maturity and age to make their own assessment and give consent then they are empowered to do so. It allows for any minor between 13 and 16 years of age to be involved in any legal procedure relating to them, and particularly with regards to any decisions made about the person, their body. From 16 years of age they're considered as an adult for any decisions relating to the care of their own body. In the instance that any controversy springs up between the legal representatives and the child's own wishes of course the child has the right to a legal representative and to have the case brought before a judge, while the decision of the minor will always been taken into consideration.

Law 26143 is the Gender Identity Law. It's a very advanced law because it allows individuals to identify with the gender they perceive themselves to be affiliated to, and they can thereby change their birth certificates and the national ID certificates in order to identify as a male or female as they see fit and perceive themselves. The law is been clear on this, when it provides (indiscernible) surgical intervention, in order to have a surgical intervention the consent of the individual in question or that of the legal representatives is required or you could have a legal ruling instead, and it's important to say that the Civil Code reaffirms the principle of the progressive autonomy and capacity of the minor, of the child and the great higher interest of that child being treated as a priority and the right to have self-determination over ones own body is a human right and so the well-being and the life of the person must always be the highest priority with their consent.»

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

IGM = Torture, NOT 'Discrimination' or 'Gender Identity'On 12 May 2017 or soon after, CAT will publish its binding Concluding observations for Argentina – now that the issue was raised during the review and the delegation's only (non-)answer was the obligatory blanket denial in combination with employing the usual red herring of gender identity issues, StopIGM.org is hoping for another stern reprimand for IGM practices.

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook>>> NGO statement on Intersex Genital Mutilations, 25.04.2017
>>>
CAT Timeline Argentina 2017 

NGO Report to the 6th and 7th Periodic Report of Argentina on the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT)

>>>  Download (PDF 267 kb)

Compiled by:
Justicia Intersex
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

See also:
23 UN Reprimands for IGM – and counting ...
“Harmful Medical Practice”: UN, COE, ACHPR, IACHR condem IGM
UN Committee for the Rights of the Child (CRC) 2015: IGM = Harmful Practice
UN Committee against Torture (CAT) 2015: IGM = Inhuman Treatment or Torture
UN Human Rights Committee (HRCttee) to examine IGM Practices
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) condemns IGM
56th Session of Committee against Torture reprimands 4 Governments for IGM
CAT 2011: Germany must investigate IGM practices and compensate survivors!

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Intersex Genital Mutilations • 17 Most Common Forms
Human Rights Violations Of Children With Variations Of Sex Anatomy
IGM – Historical Overview  What is Intersex?  How Common are IGMs?
>>> Download PDF (3.65 MB)     >>> Table of Contents

Zwischengeschlecht.org on Facebook

Eliminating IGM practices by holding the perpetrators accountable via well-established applicable human rights frameworks, including Inhuman Treatment and Harmful Practices – Presentation @ UN expert meeting on Intersex Human Rights

>>> Download PDF (831kb)

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