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Concerns over 10 reports of female genital mutilation victims in Portsmouth

Child cruelty charity the NSPCC said the health service’s figures showed the cases were recorded in Portsmouth in 2015/16.

It comes as the charity received more than one call a day from people worried about girls who may have suffered or be at risk of mutilation.

More than 1,500 calls have been made to the FGM helpline – 0800 028 3550 – since 2013.

John Cameron, head of NSPCC Helplines, said: ‘We know from calls to our dedicated helpline that female genital mutilation is still affecting hundreds of girls in the UK and we are urging young people, and any adults worried about them, to speak out and get help.

‘Some families who subject their children to female genital mutilation may do so because of cultural norms or that they believe it will help their child improve their life. It’s vital that everyone realises FGM serves no purpose, and leaves long lasting physical and emotional scars on the victims.

‘For far too long female genital cutting has been cloaked in secrecy so we need more people in communities to join forces to ensure this dangerous practice is ended. This is child abuse and it is against the law. It has no place in any society.’

Anyone who is concerned that a child is at risk of or has experienced FGM can speak to an NSPCC FGM helpline advisors on 0800 028 3550 or email fgmhelp@nspcc.org.uk so that appropriate action can be taken. More information can be found online at nspcc.org.uk/fgm

Children can call Childline at any time on 0800 1111. If you suspect a child is in immediate danger, dial the emergency services on 999.

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