Freida Pinto speaks at girls' rights summit in UKJuly 22, 2014 @ 11:24 am
See all photos
LONDON (AP) -- Actress Freida Pinto of "Slumdog Millionaire" fame has joined forces with girls' rights campaigners in calling for an end to the practice of female genital mutilation.
The Indian actress, an ambassador for an international children's development organization, called Tuesday for more progress to abolish the practice as she addressed Britain's inaugural "Girl Summit."
UNICEF, the United Nations' children agency, said some progress has been made on ending female genital mutilation, most commonly practiced in Africa and the Middle East. It is still highly prevalent in Egypt, Sudan, Mali and Somalia.
The agency and Britain's government hope that the summit will help galvanize action to end the practice within a generation.
Britain's government announced new measures to tackle the problems in the U.K., including prosecution for parents if they fail to prevent their daughters from being subjected to the practice.
The one-day event also focused on child marriages, which UNICEF says affects 700 million women alive today, especially in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
Also to address the summit was Malala Yousafzai, the teenager who was shot by the Taliban and recovered to become a global campaigner for education and women's rights.
"Traditions are not sent from heaven, they are not sent from God," she said. "It is we who make cultures and we have the right to change it and we should change it."
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
A battle is being waged on recreation trails across the state
Something to Prove
Danny O'Neil says the Broncos won't be the only team trying to recover from past defeat
A beloved search dog who helped at the Oso mudslide site has gone missing
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.