Sweeping changes to the laws on female genital mutilation are needed to improve the chances of bringing offenders to justice, Britain's top prosecutor has told ministers.

Alison Saunders, Director of Public Prosecutions, said one potential reform would put parents under a legal duty to protect their children from mutilation — leaving them vulnerable to charges if they failed to do so.

She said doctors, teachers and other health and education staff could also be given a "new statutory duty" to report cases where a girl was suspected of having undergone FGM or was likely to become a victim. Existing legislation, which covers only those living permanently in the UK, could be extended  to temporary residents.

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