Ethiopia 'to eliminate FGM by 2025'

Religious leaders in Ethiopia have committed to ending the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) across the country by 2025.

The move comes amid a similar pledge related to the early marriage of young women and girls.

Both announcements were made at a national forum, which was used to air a number of important views and insights, including the fact that Ethiopia is second only to Egypt in terms of FGM rates.

Inter Religious Council of Ethiopia Board member Dr. Abba Hailemariam Meles said religious institutions had a responsibility to aid efforts in eliminating the practice.

Council Secretary Megabi Zerihun Degu added that FGM should be considered an act of cruelty against females while early marriage has no religious justification.

The forum suggested there are currently more than 120,000 victims of female circumcision in Ethiopia and two million around the globe.