Many of you might be trapped indoors tonight. You may be huddled up for warmth, trying to beat the cold weather with friends and board games. Well worry not, because this dog will keep you company.
Via I Feel Good!
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..........................Some negative effects of living in space disappear as soon as an astronaut lands on Earth. But depending on the time spent in space, it becomes more difficult to recover from long-term consequences.A spotlight on the physical effects of living in space and time required for recovery from its negative impact.
........According to conservative estimates, the first human expedition mission to Mars is expected to take place by the mid-2030s.With the current space technology, a one-way trip to Mars would take about five to six months, which is more than double that on a round trip. NASA estimates that a mission to Mars would take about 30 months in total..................
"............Susan Boyle, 55, came to international attention when she appeared on Britain’s Got Talent in 2009. She was the runner-up – losing out to the dance troupe Diversity – but her first album, released in November of the same year, became the UK’s best-selling debut album of all time.
She has since released a further six albums – selling 20 million of them worldwide – and is said to be worth an estimated £25 million.......
......Susan Boyle is very open about romance and the problems she faces as an Asperger's sufferer. A lot of her memories of family life are fond ones. But towards the end of our conversation the mood changes.......
The video of Susan Boyle on Britain's got talent " subtitled in French
The Susan Boyle story "I dreamed a dream": 6 videos
When the European Union finalises legislation adopted by its executive body, the European Commission, the definitive texts of the directives are thrashed out in secret, closed-door meetings known as “trialogues”, unknown to the general public, where no minutes are kept. The trialogues – sometimes called trilogues – bring together, and without democratic control, representatives from the EU’s three major institutions: the Commission, the European Council of Ministers and the European Parliament. Mediapart's Brussels correspondent Ludovic Lamant reports.
Nathalie Griesbeck, a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) who represents the French centre-right UDI-MoDem party alliance, travels to meetings of “the trialogue” as if she were heading off to war. “I go there with all the legitimacy of the mandate given to me by the European Parliament,” she said. “That mandate is my solid base. I don’t let go. It is my amour as a parliamentarian, to engage battle in face of the council and the commission.”
Sue Townsend will best be remembered for her much-loved Adrian Mole diaries.
Sue Townsend will best be remembered for her much-loved Adrian Mole diaries.
Her socially awkward and self-proclaimed 'intellectual' teenage creation has spawned one of the most successful book series of our time.
Townsend instilled wit and wisdom into her 13 ¾ year old protagonist, whose commentary ranged from class consciousness, the British political system, and -not forgetting - his undying love for neighbour Pandora Braithwaite.
His wit and wisdom have planted him fondly in the British imagination where he will doubtless live for decades more.
Townsend said her favourite Adrian Mole quote was the last line of the first diary, written after Mole had tried glue sniffing and accidentally stuck a model aeroplane to his nose: “I rang Pandora, she is coming round after her viola lesson. Love is the only thing that keeps me sane…”
Here we round-up some of the best lines from Your Humble and Obedient Servant, A Mole.Adrian Mole's best quotes
1. “My skin is dead good. I think it must be a combination of being in love and Lucozade.”
2. “I have realised I have never seen a dead body or a real female nipple. This is what comes of living in a cul-de-sac.”
3. “I have a problem. I am an intellectual, but at the same time I am not very clever."
4. “I asked Pandora how long she would love me. She said, ‘As long as Britain has Gibraltar.’”
5. “Guilt is a destructive emotion and doesn’t fit in with my Life Plan.”
6. “I was racked with sexuality but it wore off when I helped my father put manure on our rose bed.”
7. “Mrs Thatcher has got eyes like a psychotic killer, but a voice like a gentle person. It is a bit confusing.”
8. “My mother is in the hospital grounds smoking a cigarette. She is looking old and haggard. All the debauchery is catching up with her.”
9. “Perhaps when I am famous and my diary is discovered people will understand the torment of being a 13 3/4 year old undiscovered intellectual.”
10. “The tap drips and keeps me awake/ In the morning there will be a lake” – one of the first poems written by Adrian Albert Mole, aged 13 ¾.
11. “Pandora smiled at me in school dinner today, but I was choking on a piece of gristle so I couldn't smile back. Just my luck!”
12. “Evelyn Waugh must be dead proud of his daughter, Auberon.”
13. “There's only one thing more boring than listening to other people's dreams, and that's listening to their problems.”
14. “My father was reading Playboy under cover of the candlelight and I was reading Hard Times by my key-ring torch.”
15. “After hearing the disgusting noises from downstairs last night, I have also vowed never to drink alcohol.”
"The Hollywood Reporter called him the “best possible candidate [with] an insatiable appetite for pop culture, politics, music – pretty much anything in the zeitgeist – and he has the ideal mind for taking in those information streams, filtering out what’s important and then commenting on that”.
"Stephen Colbert Is Replacing Letterman. Here Are His Best—and Worst—Political Moments"
As soon as Stephen Colbert – who was announced on Thursday as the replacement for David Letterman on CBS’s The Late Show – was given his own show in 2005, it would quickly be known, simply, as “Colbert”.
The Colbert Report would be a career peak for most comics. Spun off from the success of Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show, on which Colbert was a “correspondent” for eight years, the Report gave Colbert’s alter ego, a bloviating conservative in the style of Bill O’Reilly, half an hour to put America to rights, four nights a week.
Because of it, Colbert has become an unlikely influence on US politics. He would run for president twice; co-host a rally attended by 215,000 people; riff with Obama; dance with Henry Kissinger and, bizarrely, testify in character in Congress about immigration. Now he’s conquered politics, he’s landed where real American power lies: late-night TV.
Colbert has driven a long road to the Ed Sullivan Theater. The 49-year-old was the 11th of 11 children born to Lorna Tuck and James Colbert, a doctor. It was a numerical position in his family which he admits to this day makes him fight for attention. The giant Catholic family, which now has wide roots in Colbert’s home town of Charleston, South Carolina, was torn apart on 11 September 1974, when an Eastern Airlines flight carrying Colbert’s father and brothers Peter and Paul crashed, killing all three.
His mother, who died last summer, sister Elizabeth (an aspirant politician) and their faith helped to hold the family together and, as such, Colbert remains a committed Christian, who teaches Sunday school.
Having dropped out of an all-male college in Virginia, Colbert moved to Chicago to study theatre at Northwestern University.
After graduating, Colbert joined the Second City improv troupe whose graduates included John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd and Bill Murray. His work there led to several shows on Comedy Central, and a later gig on The Dana Carvey Show – a short-lived sketch show which would help to launch the careers of Louis CK, Charlie Kaufman and Colbert’s Daily Show sparring partner Steve Carell. (The pair faced off in a segment called Even Stevphen.)
In 1997, Colbert got a call from a producer on ABC’s Good Morning America which was looking for “someone who looked straight but could act funny”,.......
A mischief, his improved background and new press credentials led the Daily Show producer who hired him to suggest he may have been “genetically engineered” to be a correspondent on the show.
Colbert actually predated Jon Stewart there, but upon the latter’s arrival in 1998, The Daily Show began an arc towards its modern-day political influence. And, as the Bush years welcomed right-wing pundits such as Sean Hannity, O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh, Colbert began to layer his character’s bombast.
But it wasn’t until The Colbert Report launched in 2005 that Colbert pushed himself into wider conversation.
His success came in part from a skill at creating the kind of content which can help spread the influence of late-night TV beyond 11pm.
Those included the hijacking of a poll to rename a Hungarian bridge and the invention of the word “truthiness” (“truth which comes from the gut, not the books”) which was named a 2005 word of the year.
As the Report aged, the comic’s persona sharpened. A behind-the-scenes 2007 clip gives the best explanation of how it works. In it, Colbert asks John Kerry: “You know that I’m in character, and that I’m an idiot? I’m wilfully ignorant of what we’re going to talk about, so disabuse me of my ignorance.”
As Stewart and Colbert became more influential, their role in politics has risen accordingly, with Colbert rarely breaking character.
That reached its apex with the pair’s 2010 Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in Washington (a spoof of a similar event by Glenn Beck).
But it may have been Colbert’s surgical skewering of George W Bush at the 2006 White House correspondents’ dinner which made a global audience aware of Colbert’s comedy. Among many stings, Colbert told an unamused Bush: “Over the last five years, you people were so good – over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn’t want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out.” The clip was a YouTube sensation and gave Colbert a reputation even among those who didn’t know his show. (It had a brief run here on the FX channel.)
From there, he’s risen from cult star to a regular face at award shows and the White House. (In the absence of a Madame Hollande, he sat next to Michelle Obama at a recent state dinner for the French President.) Both Colberts fear no one, not even the creators of the pop hit of the decade. When Daft Punk stood him up to go to the MTV awards instead last summer, Colbert responded by corralling stars including Matt Damon, Bryan Cranston (and Kissinger) for a version of “Get Lucky”.
CBS will be hoping he can do more of the same. Its president of entertainment, Nina Tassler, described Colbert as “head and tails above everyone else” when it came to replacing Letterman. ......
As if to prove it, he recently appeared on both The Tonight Show (Jimmy Fallon) and The Late Show (Letterman) out of character and excelled. Asked by Fallon if he’d “ever been romantically involved with a horse”, Colbert replied: “No, I wouldn’t say any romance was involved.” On Letterman, he dressed as a Dickensian urchin and sang.
In a late-night environment where there’s all to play for – with Leno & Letterman gone and going – Colbert’s knowledge of the rigours of a daily show, added to his popularity among cultured Americans, should ensure he’s a hit.
There has been, however, one dissenting voice – right-wing radio presenter Rush Limbaugh. His take? “CBS has just declared war on the heartland of America.” Which sounds exactl
Johnny Cash, ‘Out Among the Stars’ (Columbia/Legacy)
New Cash album uncovers tracks recorded in the 1980s. (Columbia/Legacy)
This release is a real find. It’s not a collection of unfinished demos, alternate tracks, or outtakes. It’s a bonafide, brand new Johnny Cash album compiled from tracks Cash recorded in 1981 and 1984 but were left to languish in the vaults. Until now.
Cash’s career had stalled in the ’80s, a time when he couldn’t even land an album on the country charts. But you wouldn’t know that from listening to these songs.
Working with “countrypolitan” producer Billy Sherrill (Tammy Wynette, George Jones), Cash has great fun duetting with wife June Carter Cash on the lively “Baby Ride Easy” and the mellow, romantic “Don’t You Think It’s Come Our Time.” “I’m Movin’ On,” where he trades lines with Waylon Jennings, foreshadows his later work with Jennings in country supergroup the Highwaymen.
It’s the light-hearted material that goes down best; the jokey “If I Told You Who It Was,” describes a romantic encounter with teasing lines like “Her tire, unlike her body, was very flat.”
The only disappointment for Cash fans is that the album is a mere 12 tracks (there’s also a superfluous bonus track with remix of “She Used to Love Me a Lot” by Elvis Costello). But it’s still nice to get to spend a little more time with the Man in Black.
Via musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac
Income inequality is surging, and there are few countries where it is rising faster than the United States.
The distance between rich and poor is greater in America than nearly all other developed countries, making the US a leader in a trend that economists warn has dire consequences.
GlobalPost sets out on a reporting journey to get at the ‘ground truth’ of inequality through the lenses of education, race, immigration, health care, government, labor and natural resources.
The hope is to hold a mirror up to the US to see how it compares to countries around the world.
Secession. It's all the rage. A petition appeared on whitehouse.gov this week, asking Obama to give Alaska to Russia.
The petition, called "Alaska back to Russia" states:
Groups Siberian russians crossed the Isthmus (now the Bering Strait) 16-10 thousand years ago
Russian began to settle on the Arctic coast, Aleuts inhabited the Aleutian Archipelago.
First visited Alaska August 21, 1732, members of the team boat "St. Gabriel »under the surveyor Gvozdev and assistant navigator I. Fedorov during the expedition Shestakov and DI Pavlutski 1729-1735 years
Vote for secession of Alaska from the United States and joining Russia
The White House only responds to petitions with 100,000 or more signatures, so the Alaska secessionists have a ways to go.
Aulde de B's insight:
azy comments below thz vidoe
"Pope Francis isn't the only one changing the face of Catholicism these days.By the grace of God go this nun.
This is so great. A Catholic nun in full habit sang Alicia Keys' "No One" on Italy's version of "The Voice" this week.
She didn't just sing it. She rocked it:
The video is so great, largely because the nun, 25-year-old Sicilian Cristina Scuccia, has kickin' pipes, but also because the audition is blind, and you get to see the judges' faces when they turn around to take in the fact that the woman singing is indeed Sister Scuccia.
You also get to see the Ursuline Sisters of the Holy Family bob up and down with excitement as their fellow sister wins accolades from the judges and audience alike.
Needless to say, Scuccia made it onto the show, according to the Washington Post. We'll see what happens next.
Scuccia says it would be nice to win, but she's really in it for the love of song. No wait, actually she's there to spread the word of God.
"I came here because I have a gift, and I want to share that gift. I am here to evangelize," she told the judges.
Pope Francis isn't the only one changing the face of Catholicism.
"The Voice" originated in The Netherlands, and like so many of these talent-based reality TV shows it has spinoffs in more than a dozen countries.
Not only does the global mish-mash of these shows make for stellar entertainment, but it also provides a fascinating barometer of the cultural tide.
Let's not forget the 23-year-old from Cambridge, Mass., who made it to the finals on "Arabs Got Talent" singing classical Arabic music.
It's a big world. Things are getting mixed up. Sometimes in awesome ways.
The network will also no longer be airing the Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants as a result.
NBC has severed all ties with Donald Trump following his recent remarks regarding Mexican immigrants.
"At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values. Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump," the network said in a statement. "To that end, the annual Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants, which are part of a joint venture between NBC and Trump, will no longer air on NBC. In addition, as Mr. Trump has already indicated, he will not be participating in The Celebrity Apprentice on NBC. Celebrity Apprentice is licensed from Mark Burnett's United Artists Media Group and that relationship will continue."
In case you've muted Donald Trump on Twitter and/or your every day life, during the recent speech in which Trump announced his presidential bid he said,
"When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best... they're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists."
Soon after, Univision announced it would not air the Miss USA pageant, of which Donald Trump is partial owner, while NBC also stated that his opinions did not represent those of the company.
France’s far-right Front National party is attempting to find funding from abroad for the 2017 presidential election campaign of its leader Marine Le Pen; she has been unable to convince French banks to provide the sizeable loans the party needs.
Among potential foreign backers the party has already had contacts with is the United Arab Emirates which, according to one of Le Pen’s close entourage, financed an official visit she made to Egypt in 2015. Marine Turchi reports."
With six months to go before the first round of next year’s presidential elections, France’s far-right Front National party is actively seeking funds from abroad for its campaign behind party leader Marine Le Pen."
In 2012 the French post office La Poste agreed to set up a commission to find ways to reduce work-related stress, illness and suicides following its abrupt change of status from state-run enterprise to a limited company funded by the public purse.
But today unions and workplace health experts say that many of the group's 260,000 staff are still suffering from the pace of change caused by endless reorganisation. As Rachida El Azzouzi reports, management are now in talks with unions in a bid to solve the problem.
In 2012 the French post office La Poste agreed to set up a commission to find ways to reduce work-related stress, illness and suicides following its abrupt change of status from state-run enterprise to a limited company funded by the public purse. But today unions and workplace health experts say that many of the group's 260,000 staff are still suffering from the pace of change caused by endless reorganisation. As Rachida El Azzouzi reports, management are now in talks with unions in a bid to solve the problem.
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) have successfully tested bilateral shoulder-level prosthetics, allowing a test subject to perform complex tasks using both arms simultaneously. The tests indicate that the system is quick to learn, and it could one day drastically alter the lives of shoulder-level amputees.
For most of us, simple tasks like drinking a cup of coffee or using a vending machine don’t present any problems. But for people like Leslie Baugh, who lost both his arms in an electrical accident some 40 years ago, they can be simply impossible. The research and development of advanced prosthetics, such as those in this study, aims to change this, and has the potential to truly transform people’s lives.
In order for the technology to work, Mr. Baugh was first required to undergo a treatment known as targeted muscle reinnervation, designed to reassign nerves that once controlled the amputated limb. Following the treatment, the team used pattern recognition software to isolate individual contracting muscles, studying the communication between them, as well as the frequency and amplitude of the nerve impulses. That information was then translated into specific movements in the prostheses.
To allow Baugh to control the limbs, a custom socket was created for the top half of his torso, designed for the dual purposes of supporting the artificial limbs and allowing for the neurological connections with the reinnervated nerves. Though a computer-modeled version of the socket was produced first, the need for it to be precisely fitted to Baugh’s torso led to a second version being created, using a more traditional cast technique.
While waiting for the finished article to arrive, the team got to work training Baugh to use the prostheses via a Virtual Integration Environment (VIE) – a virtual reality version of the team's Modular Prosthetic Limbs (MPLs). Once the socket and protheses were fitted, he was able to carry out complex tasks such as moving a cup between shelves of varying heights, carrying out as many as eight separate motions to achieve the goals. He was even able to simultaneously control a combination of motions across both arms – a first for the field.
It’s been an exciting month for prosthetics research, and the Johns Hopkins University study isn’t the only positive result we’ve seen. Earlier this month, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh published the results of a similarly promising study involving a mind-controlled robotic arm.
Source: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
A Swedish family have described how they were terrorised by a giant rat which tunnelled through cement to take over their kitchen.
"Monster 15-inch rodent finally caught in huge mousetrap – yet still almost escaped alive"
"A Swedish family have described how they were terrorised by a giant rat which tunnelled through cement to take over their kitchen.
Pest controllers said the “Viking” monster, measuring 15 inches (40cm) not including the tail, was the largest rat they had ever seen.
The Bengtsson-Korsås family thought they must have had a mouse infestation after they heard noises coming from behind appliances in the kitchen – but darker suspicions were aroused when their cat started refusing to go near that part of the house.
It emerged that the rat had entered their basement by burrowing through wood and cement, carving out a lair for itself behind the dishwasher.
Signe Bengtsson-Korsås told the Swedish edition of The Local that first contact was made when she went to empty the bin under the sink.
“It was right there in our rubbish bin, a mighty monster. I was petrified. I couldn't believe such a big rat could exist,” she said.
“I couldn't help but do the old classic and jump on the kitchen table and scream.”
Her husband, Eric Bengtsson-Korsås, said he was away at the time and thought his wife must have been exaggerating.
'It was quite a shocking experience', said Ms Bengtsson-Korsås “By the time I got home, the rat was so domesticated that it just sat under the kitchen table,” Mr Bengtsson-Korsås said.
When they realised that the rat had chewed through the pipes at the back of the dishwasher, flooding part of the kitchen, the family put the area “on lockdown” and called in exterminators.
Pest controllers put down three huge traps, and a day later one went off.
Yet not willing to go down without a fight, the rat had disappeared – dragging the trap with it back behind the dishwasher. It later died – though the family’s children remained unconvinced.
“The kids were afraid it would come back to life as some sort of zombie rat. They didn't want to touch it,” Mr Bengtsson-Korsås added."
"At Paris' Zadkine Museum, explore vibrant photos of the pre-Soviet Russian Empire..."
"In the early 20th century, two events changed Russia—and the world—forever: World War I and the Bolshevik Revolution.
There to capture Russia's way of life right before the change from a large, but isolated, agrarian society to an increasingly industrialized one was photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii.
In the early 1900s, Prokudin-Gorskii mapped out a plan for a photographic survey of the Russian Empire, a plan that won the support of Tsar Nicholas II.
Between 1909 and 1915, Prokudin-Gorskii crisscrossed the Russian Empire via train, taking photographs of 11 different regions. 150 of his photographs are now on display to the public in Paris' Zadkine Museum, to commemorate what would have been Prokudin-Gorskii's 150th birthday.
Educated as a chemist, Prokudin-Gorskii studied with leading color photography experts in St. Petersburg, Berlin and Paris.
Through his inventive tinkering, he created a new method for producing vibrant color film slides. Prokudin-Gorskii created color images by exposing one oblong glass plate three times, in rapid succession, through three different color filters: red, green and blue.
He then presented these color images in slides by projecting the three different color images through three different lenses, one on top of another. When the three images were projected in concert, a full color image could be seen.
Using this new method, Prokudin-Gorskii took over 2,000 images of the Empire, capturing everything from people to architecture to the Empire's expanding industrial infrastructure.
The images truly represent a lost world: many of the buildings that Prokudin-Gorskii photographed were destroyed in the Bolshevik Revolution.
The photos also show the wide ethnic diversity of the Russian Empire, from photographs of young peasant Russian girls to a series of images of Uzbek men and women.
The complete canon of Prokudin-Gorskii's work was purchased by the Library of Congress from his sons in 1948. You can view more of his work online through the Library of Congress's website.
The exhibit in Paris is on display through May 18, 2014. Admission to the main museum is free, but the exhibit itself carries a €4 (about $5.50) fee."
Via musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac
Including an 8-foot Da Vinci and a portrait of Jesus Christ.
OK so this is relatively gross, but bear with me.
This man, in an attempt to be a "different kind" of artist, has developed a method whereby he paints exclusively with his tongue.
The artist's name is Ani K and when he isn't tilting his head at odd angles to achieve nuanced brushstrokes, he's a schoolteacher in Kerala, southern India.
"I wanted to be a different kind of artist," he says by way of explanation in the above video.
An age-old impulse, to be sure. But while some seek distinction through the content of their work, Ani K opted to explore the possiblities of form and method.
He didn't jump straight to the tongue.
"I have tried painting with my nose, tried painting with my chin, my elbows and feet," the 35-year-old said. "I also tried drawing with both hands simultaneously, and also while riding on a moving bike."
The tongue, in the end, would serve Ani K, though not without a price.
"After painting with my tongue, I experience pain in my jaws, headaches, slight loss of vision and dip in memory power," he says. "The side effects stay around for two weeks."
With a slip of his tongue, Ani K has painted more than 1,000 works — including an eight-foot Da Vinci and a portrait of Jesus Christ. Keepin' it classic in some ways at least.
If the tongue won't lead Ani K to stardom, there are other ways.
"For the Guiness Records," he says, "I am going to paint four portraits using both hands and both feet at the same time.
Do send word when you do, Ani K. Don't bite your tongue.
From May Day to Labor Day, GlobalPost explores the human cost of what's been called a "RACE TO THE BOTTOM"."
The hyper-accelerated movement of capital, jobs and resources from the world's corporations — manufacturing, agriculture and service — TO THE LOWER BIDDER . In an era of diminished expectations, broken promises and sleight of hand, these are labor stories of governments, employers, unions and workers.
The latest Department of Health figures from 2007 suggest that 66,000 women in England and Wales are living with the consequences of FGM.
Agence France-PresseMarch 21, 2014
The latest Department of Health figures from 2007 suggest that 66,000 women in England and Wales are living with the consequences of FGM.
A London doctor and another man have become the first people to be charged in Britain over female genital mutilation, state prosecutors announced on Friday.
Dr. Dhanuson Dharmasena, 31, is accused of re-performing an FGM procedure on a woman who gave birth at his hospital in November 2012 following damage caused by labor.
Another man, Hasan Mohamed, 40, is accused of intentionally encouraging an offense of FGM, and of aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring Dharmasena to commit the offense.
It was not immediately clear what Mohamed's relationship to the victim was, but he is not a healthcare professional.
"It was alleged that following a patient giving birth in November 2012, a doctor at the Whittington Hospital, in London, repaired FGM that had previously been performed on the patient, allegedly carrying out FGM himself," said Alison Saunders, director of public prosecutions.
"Having carefully considered all the available evidence, I have determined there is sufficient evidence and it would be in the public interest to prosecute Dr Dhanuson Dharmasena."
Both Dharmasena, from Essex, east of London, and Mohamed, from north London, will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on April 15.
Some 100 to 140 million girls and women globally are thought to have undergone FGM, which ranges from removal of the clitoris to more widespread mutilation, and can lead to infection and long-term severe pain.
FGM has been illegal in Britain since 1985 but no-one has ever been prosecuted.
There have been increasing calls on police and the government to act, and last month ministers introduced a new requirement on British hospitals to keep a record of patients who have been subjected to FGM.
The latest Department of Health figures from 2007 suggest that 66,000 women in England and Wales are living with the consequences of FGM, and a further 23,000 girls under the age of 15 are at risk every year.
FGM was first made illegal in Britain under a 1985 law, which was extended in 2003 to make it an offence for British nationals or permanent residents to carry out FGM abroad or seek FGM abroad, even where it is legal.
The maximum penalty is 14 years in jail.