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Dear fellow campaigners, allies and friends

Next week, the UN Human Rights Council will debate Intersex Genital Mutilations, on occasion of the Universal Periodic Review of Switzerland during the 14th UPR Session in Geneva, and on the basis of our submission within the Swiss Coalition Shadow Report (see intersex.shadowreport.org and fact sheet below).

Below you'll find our mailing to all of the UNHRC Missions in Geneva, accompanied by our fact sheet re: Western Genital Mutilation [>>> PDF 75 kb].

We ask if you and/or your group could contact your country's UN Mission in Geneva and/or other appropriate bodies, seconding our submission/mailing/fact sheet, and ask them to also recommend that Switzerland should take appropriate steps in order to end this grave human rights violation. This will also benefit intersex submissions from other countries already in the pipeline for future UPR sessions. Feel free to ask your allies to do the same.

You'll find the details of your country's mission here:
http://www.unog.ch/80256EE600582E34/%28httpPages%29/8CEC446B720477DA80256EF8004CB68C?OpenDocument&expand=1&count=10000#1

Please help us to end intersex genital mutilations! Time is of essence!

In case of questions, please get in touch.

Feel free to redistribute this email.

Thank you for your support!

Kind regards

Daniela Truffer, Markus Bauer / Zwischengeschlecht.org
  

Documentation
'Intersex Genital Mutilations: History & Current Practice'

>>> Download (PDF, 2.4 MB)   [ TRIGGER WARNING!!! ]

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

>>> Download (PDF, 1.95 MB)     

  

       

F A C T   S H E E T    >>> PDF (75 kb)

Western Genital Mutilation a.k.a. Cosmetic Genital Surgery performed on Children
Switzerland 14th Universal Periodic Review 2012

Summary:
Clitoris amputations and other cosmetic "genital corrections" in children's clinics

Clitoris amputations on young girls have been prevalent in western medicine since the 19th century as therapy for a) masturbation, b) hysteria, and c) "enlarged clitoris". While amputations motivated by a) and b) had been abandoned between 1900 and 1945, amputations of "enlarged clitorises" took a sharp rise after 1950 and became de facto medical standard on newborns in the 1960s, partly in combination with gonadectomies (castrations). Doctors argued, these amputations would not affect the ability to achieve orgasm. However, in the 1980s they switched to new techniques involving only partial removal of the clitoris, allegedly now preserving sexual sensation. In addition, a new trend emerged towards "masculinizing surgeries". Since the 1990s, the persons concerned denounce all of these surgeries as "immensely destructive of sexual sensation", as western genital mutilation, and as violation of their right to physical integrity and self-determination. 2011, UN-CAT criticized cosmetic "genital corrections" and recommended  investigations into the practice (CAT/C/DEU/CO/5 [>>> PDF, 474 kb], point 20. "Intersex people", p. 6-7).

14th Universal Periodic Review

In 2012 for the first time an NGO of persons concerned and supporters from Switzerland, Zwischengeschlecht.org, is asking the Human Rights Council for help in order to abolish these harmful practices. See issue 18 from Swiss NGO Coalition's Submission (p. 9):

18. Cosmetic genital surgery performed on children

About 1 child in 1000 is born with “inconclusive“ physical sexual characteristics (hermaphrodism, intersex, disorders of sex development). Such children are very frequently operated on “for cosmetic reasons” at a baby age. Those affected often see these operations as unwanted surgery without medical necessity and evidence. Furthermore, such interventions represent an infringement to the right to physical integrity and self-determination.

Recommendation

Switzerland should establish a commission to deal with the issues of those affected by the consequences of cosmetic genital surgery in an unbiased and fair manner.

In the name of the persons concerned, we petition the members of the Human Rights Council to consider their pleas and to help forcing the Swiss government to abandon mutilating cosmetic surgeries on defenseless children.

Contact:
Daniela Truffer, person concerned and founding member of Zwischengeschlecht.org
info_at_zwischengeschlecht.org
Mobile +41 76 398 06 50

>>>
intersex.shadowreport.org
>>> humanrights.4hermaphrodites2.org
>>> stop.genitalmutilation.org  
  

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

>>> Download (PDF, 1.95 MB)

Documentation
'Intersex Genital Mutilations: History & Current Practice'

>>> Download (PDF, 2.4 MB)   [ TRIGGER WARNING!!! ]

Open Letter to '51st Annual Meeting of ESPE' 2012
Open Letter to '3rd EuroDSD Symposium' 2011
Open Letter to '11th EMBL/EMBO Conference' 2010

 


Subject: Swiss UPR: Genital Mutilation in Children's Clinics in Switzerland
To: UNHRC Missions in Geneva
From: Daniela Truffer Zwischengeschlecht.org

Dear Madams and Sirs

I'm asking you for your support to end a grave human rights violation in Switzerland, on behalf of our human rights group Zwischengeschlecht.org, representing affected persons, and contributor to the Swiss NGO Coalition Shadow Report, where we outlined our grievances re: cosmetic genital surgeries on children with "atypical genitals" (see fact sheet below and attached).

I was submitted to repeated "genital corrections" myself, as well as to "gonadectomy" (castration/forced sterilisation) and other degrading treatments, about which my parents were lied to, and can testify to the detrimental effects of these irreversible and serious surgeries, also on sexual sensation.

The Swiss government, while quickly to condemn genital cutting in african countries, still refuses to acknowledge the human rights violations perpetrated in local children's hospitals, let alone setting their own house in order. Despite the fact that recently also the UN Committee on Torture (CAT) criticised the cosmetic genital surgeries on children (see fact sheet).

Please help us, in the name of the future children, so that they can grow up intact and without mutilating surgeries and other degrading "treatments"! Please confront the Swiss government with our grievances, and demand they take appropriate steps!

In case of further questions, as well as suggestions, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Thank you so much for your consideration.

Kind regards

Daniela Truffer / Zwischengeschlecht.org

Mobile +41 76 398 06 50

stop.genitalmutilation.org
intersex.shadowreport.org
humanrights.4hermaphrodites2.org
 

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

>>> Download (PDF, 1.95 MB)

Documentation
'Intersex Genital Mutilations: History & Current Practice'

>>> Download (PDF, 2.4 MB)   [ TRIGGER WARNING!!! ]

Open Letter to '51st Annual Meeting of ESPE' 2012
Open Letter to '3rd EuroDSD Symposium' 2011
Open Letter to '11th EMBL/EMBO Conference' 2010