Police in West Midland Region, England, arrested three individuals over alleged Female Genitalia Mutation (FGM) carried out in an unregistered school.
West Midland Police arrested two men aged 32 and 61 and later arrested a third person. The police said The Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills (OFSTED) tipped them off about the alleged practice.
Speaking to the DailyMail, a West Midlands Police spokesman said they received a call at 11:39 AM on May 10 from an Ofsted investigator looking into an unregistered school.
"There were concerns raised about possible illegal practices which may have taken place at the premises," the spokesman said. "As part of our inquiries, two men, aged 32 and 61, have been arrested on suspicion of being involved in female genital mutilation," the spokesman added.
West Midland Police also acknowledge the possible social implication of the incident. "But it's important to stress we're still working to establish whether any offenses have occurred," the spokesman said.
The incident comes as a panel of experts, supported by the International NGO Council on Genital Autonomy (INGOCGA, and the National Secular Society (NSS), released a report urging the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child to protect children from "non-therapeutic genital cutting."
The report concluded that "all medically unnecessary genital cutting of children is a breach of the child's right under the Convention to protection from all forms of violence."
The report also recommended that the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child protect children equally by requesting that member states treat and target Male Genital Mutilation, as much they do with FGM, as a “harmful traditional practice based on religion, culture, religion, or superstition.”
These recommendations included adopting or amending legislation and exploring other forms of genital mutilation as a "means to eradicate these practices."
One of the report's authors and chair of the NSS Secular Medical Forum, Dr. Antony Lempert, said genital mutilation can often lead to "permanent damage to the genitals." It also "violates the child's right to freedom of religion and belief and fails to extend to the child the minimum personal rights afforded to adults," Dr. Lempert added.
According to the West Midland Police, OFSTED discovered a room with a table and medical equipment while inspecting the unregistered school. The three individuals arrested regarding alleged FGM were released on bail with strict conditions.
"Our investigation along with partner agencies is continuing," West Midland Police said.