Special
Sun, 03/17/2013 - 6:00pm

“Half a million women a year die in childbirth,” says Nicholas Kristof. “It’s not biology that’s killing them but neglect.” Diane Lane and Kristof investigate maternal mortality in Somaliland, where one in 12 women dies in childbirth due to poor nutrition and the effects of female genital mutilation (FGM) — also known as cutting — a brutal ritual that has been performed on more than 130 million women around the world. They meet with Edna Adan, founder of the Edna Adan Maternity Hospital, Somaliland’s first maternal health facility. Adan saves the lives of pregnant women on a daily basis with sophisticated health care and C-sections. She also trains midwives, who then return to their communities, and works to educate women about the dangers of FGM, which causes infection and scarring that leads to difficulties in childbirth. Lane and Kristof visit the hut of a local woman who performs cuttings and learn how Adan and her army of midwives are trying to turn the tide against this dangerous, deeply entrenched tradition.