Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) may occur amongst members of migrant communities in Belgium, even though it is considered a non-practising country.
According to a report by the European Institute for Gender Equality, FGM/C is banned by Article 409 of the Penal Code. The report notes that to perform, participate, facilitate and attempt to perform FGM/C are considered an offence. If committed on an underage girl, the offence will carry a more severe penalty. The law against FGM/C applies extraterritorially.
Belgium ratified the ICESCR in 1983, CEDAW in 1985 and the CRC in 1991. Belgium has signed, but not ratified the Istanbul Convention. For Belgian case law concerning FGM/C please see our Case Law page.
Anti-FGM/C Organisations in Belgium
GAMS Belgique asbl (Groupe pour l’Abolition des Mutilations Sexuelles féminines)
Tel.: +32 (0)2 219 43 40
GAMS Belguim organises activities to raise awareness among communities, briefings and training for professionals, as well as advocacy at national and international level for the abolition of FGM/C. GAMS supports mutilation by guiding them to health and legal aid services. Moreover, it offers individual psychological counselling and group workshops.
Tel.: +32 (0)2 539 02 04, +32(0) 497 55 04 56 (Dutch), +32(0) 479 67 19 46 (French)
The non-profit organisation Intact aims at becoming a ‘place of reference’ for legal issues related to FGM/C. It takes legal action to combat the practice of FGM/C and specially with the purpose of supporting individuals and professionals in legal or judicial proceedings (legal, judicial consultations, follow-up of applications for asylum, support for professionals confronted with child victims or children at risk, organisation of training/symposium on FGM).
No Peace Without Justice – Gender and Human Rights Program
We have no FGM Lawyer for Belgium, but would welcome suggestions. Please contact us.