Female genital mutilation will feature on prime-time TV for the first time on Saturday in Casualty, bringing a modern scandal out of the shadows, say campaigners.

The BBC soap is running a storyline about a girl who has undergone the procedure and is trying to protect her younger sister from the same fate. The younger girl is threatened with being taken abroad to her extended family for cutting and later with being subjected to it in the UK.

"FGM has been in the shadows here in this country," said Efua Dorkenoo of Equality Now, one of the leading campaigners against the practice. "Because of that, we as a country are not really grappling hard with the fact that it is happening here."

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