This is followed by leaves, bananas, coconut shells, grinding stones, ladles, spatulas, and hammers heated over coals. AllAfrica publishes around reports a day from more than news organizations and over other institutions and individuals , representing a diversity of positions on every topic. A UNICEF report indicates that the motives behind the practice are obviously ineffective as flattened breasts have not reduced the rate of teenage pregnancies and rape incidents. To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here. Other possible side-effects reported by the German development agency GIZ include breast infections, formation of abscesses, malformed breasts and the complete stunting of one or both breasts. Additionally, no one has been arrested or convicted in Cameroon for breast ironing despite the over 4 million victims.
Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica. According to a German development agency GIZ report, one out of every 10 Cameroonian girls has been subjected to breast ironing. Breast Ironing By Kylie Kiunguyu Breast ironing, a traditional practice commonly done in Cameroon, is the use of hard or heated objects like a wooden pestle or scalding grinding stones to stop or slow the development of breasts in young girls, supposedly to "protect them from sexual harassment, rape and early pregnancy". Other possible side-effects reported by the German development agency GIZ include breast infections, formation of abscesses, malformed breasts and the complete stunting of one or both breasts. Making this information widely known in the countries and communities where the practice is done, as well as stressing the heavy physical and psychological consequences, may begin an upward trend towards eradication. Modern Reasons One wonders what place such an unnatural practice would have in a modern, enlightened African society. This is followed by leaves, bananas, coconut shells, grinding stones, ladles, spatulas, and hammers heated over coals. The fact that young girls experience torture and mutilation in anticipation of possible gender violence is an indication that patriarchy must end, not just for the good of woman kind but for the betterment of all mankind. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct. Its effects and consequences are well known and activists are hopeful that the world will see the end of the practice within a generation. Society's refusal to lay the burden of sexual and gender-based violence solely with the perpetrators is the reason young female victims suffer tenfold. Breast ironing is mostly practiced in parts of Cameroon, where the perception by boys and men is that if a girls breasts have begun to grow', she is ready for sex. Often the father remains completely unaware. Unlike the highly publicised FGM, which claims to ensure cleanliness and better marriage prospects, prevent promiscuity and preserve virginity, breast ironing is a silent practice done to combat the scourge of gender-based violence. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us. A UNICEF report indicates that the motives behind the practice are obviously ineffective as flattened breasts have not reduced the rate of teenage pregnancies and rape incidents. Breast ironing in recent times has been accredited to the earlier onset of puberty, caused by dietary improvements in Cameroon over the last 50 years. The girl believes that what her mother is doing is for her own good and she keeps silent. There is no known law against breast ironing, despite efforts by survivors and rights agencies to get the governments to ban the practice. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. However, like FGM, breast-ironing has been identified by the UN as one of five under-reported crimes relating to gender-based violence. The mutilation is designed to make teenage girls look less "womanly" to deter unwanted male attention, which could lead to all the aforementioned consequences. Fighting violence against women and patriarchy: But there are other harmful forms of mutilation that African girls face under the guise of protection and the preservation of virtue. Speaking about the less commonly known forms of gender-based violence, well intentioned or not, will mean a future where Africa's daughters are not taught to be quiet as they are mutilated and tortured for tradition or as some kind of convoluted protection. Even though there have been no medical studies on its effects, medical experts warn it might contribute to breast cancer, cysts, depression, and perhaps interfere with breastfeeding later in life.
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