Qld mum denies genital mutilation charges
A Queensland girl was playing outside her grandmother's house in Somalia when she was called inside, unaware she was about to have her genitals painfully mutilated, a court has heard.
The Australian-born girl and her sister had only been in Somalia for a few days when their genitals were allegedly cut with their mother by their side in April 2015.
Seven months later, when they arrived back in Australia and their bodies had healed, they reluctantly but courageously told police about their experiences.
It has led to their mother, who cannot be named for legal reasons, being on trial in Brisbane District Court for female genital mutilation charges.
Neither child knew what was planned for them, the court heard, and they were conscious during the procedures.
"A couple of days after her arrival in Somalia, (one of the victims) was playing with her friends outside her grandmother's house and she was told to come inside the house," crown prosecutor Dejana Kovac said.
"She said she complied with the request and then saw an unknown lady doctor, for lack of a better word, who did something to her which caused her pain which persisted for two-to-three days.
"Her mother ... was present at the time.
"She doesn't know what was done to her because she wasn't looking. She wasn't sedated. She was awake and felt everything in the part of her body that she says she uses to urinate."
Their mother, who prosecutors allege had care of the children from the whole trip, pleaded not guilty to two counts of removing a child from the state for female genital mutilation on Monday.
The offence carries a 14-year maximum jail sentence.
When the family came back to Australia seven months later, the girls told police "something happened" to them.
"Softly spoken, clearly containing her emotions, shy and avoiding eye contact, she was obviously reluctant to talk about it with the complete stranger sitting in front of her," Ms Kovac said of the older girl's police interview.
A pediatrician verified parts of their genitalia had been removed, the Crown said.
They continued living with their parents after telling police about their experience, the court heard.
The trial continues.
© AAP 2019