More than 1,500 new cases of female genital mutilation have been revealed by a single London maternity unit in an indication of the scale of the suffering inflicted on women in the capital.

St George's hospital in Tooting has treated as many as 200 women a year since it began compiling statistics on the barbaric practice.

Many of the 1,546 victims seen at the hospital were born in Somalia and substantial numbers were from Nigeria and Eritrea.

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