08:29 GMT +314 December 2019
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    An Egyptian woman seen from a motorized rickshaw walks on a street, near the home of 13-year-old Sohair el-Batea who died undergoing the procedure of female genital mutilation

    Twitter Criticized For Paid Post Promoting Female Genital Mutilation

    © AP Photo / Nariman El-Mofty
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    The social media have removed a sponsored tweet from a Muslim women’s group justifying the "circumcision" of girls for violating its policy following a backlash from enraged netizens slamming it for advertising girls’ genital mutilation. By the time it was removed, the video had been shown about 30,000 times to users who didn't follow the group.

    The video posted on Twitter and sponsored by the Shia group Dawoodi Bohra Women for Religious Freedom promoted so-called female “circumcision,” or “khafiz,” on girls, triggering a wave of discontent against the social media network's management.

    ​The sponsored post was viewed 30,000 times, including by  users who didn’t follow the group’s accounts. One of the DBWRF members said: “My daughters have also undergone khafiz, and they're growing up as perfectly as other children of their age. As a mother, I can never do anything to harm them."
    The group argued on their website that this shouldn’t be confused with  female genital mutilation (FGM).
    However, the post enraged many users, who pointed out that khafiz is indeed mutilation.

    ​Many addressed the Twitter safety watchdog, insisting such publications shouldn’t be promoted or posted at all.

    ​Following the uproar, Twitter canceled the promoted publication.

    “This was a promoted tweet and was removed for violation of our policies,” its spokesman commented. However, the social media management let the original post stay on the DBWRF account.

    The group, in turn, distanced itself from FGM.

    ​They sated on the web-site that circumcision is a "removal of a speck of superficial skin, a simple gentle process in which there is negligible, if any, pain." However, the World Health Organization classifies even the tiny removal as FGM, harming girls and women in many ways.

    READ MORE: US-UK Launch Effort to Fight Female Genital Mutilation at Home

    According to Unicef, more than 200million women and girls have had FGM procedures around the globe.


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