Topic: Violence and abuse

Female genital mutilation (FGM): The work of the Police

In Norway 56232 women and girls originate from countries where FGM is a tradition. In a calculation by Damwad and NKVTS it is estimated that 17306 women and children may have been cut before they came to Norway, and 16 – 17000 girls may at the moment be at risk of being exposed to the procedure. In spite of this high risk, no parents have ever been punished by law for having cut their daughters. Since 2005 there have been 46 cases, and in Oslo alone 12 cases have been dismissed and closed without a sentence. Except for some sentences in France, there has been no or only a few sentences given in Europe. Most charges have been dismissed.

2015 This project has been completed 2017

Project Manager

Main objective

The objective of the study is 1. To explore FGM through a system perspective where the focus will be on the work that the police do against this form of crime, so that we shall have a better understanding and possible solutions to the challenges that the police face when they investigate this type of crime. 2. Through insights and understanding, we will be able to suggest solutions that may influence the scope and dimension and have a deterring effect.   

Questions: What is the cause for reported cases being dismissed within the system of law. Why did it become a case? Who reports cases and on what basis are the cases reported? How does the police work with these cases. What competence do they have, and what competence do they miss? How does information flow within the system? Do the police have to take special consideration with FGM cases that they do not have to take with other cases?


Qualitative interviews, documents analysis


Lien, I. L. (2017). Politiets arbeid med kjønnslemlestelse: En systemteoretisk analyse. Oslo: Nasjonalt kunnskapssenter om vold og traumatisk stress. (Rapport 6/2017).

Lien, I. L. (2017). Prosecution of the offence of female genital mutilation/cutting in Norway. International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family, 31(2), 191-206. doi:10.1093/lawfam/ebx003