A man in his 30s is being questioned over the alleged female genital mutilation of a young girl.
The Somalian national was arrested on Thursday evening at an apartment where a mother lives with two girls under the age of five.
It is believed the arrest in Crumlin, South Dublin, is one the first of its kind in Ireland
This morning specialist police teams combed the first floor apartment.
Dressed in head-to-toe white forensic outfits, the specialist detectives carried out a detailed examination as part of the probe.
Uniformed officers stood guard at the door of the house on Friday morning.
It’s believed a girl, aged two, is undergoing treatment in hospital.
Detectives are quizzing the man on suspicion of carrying out the barbaric butchery – which is banned by law in Ireland.
One source said: “This Somalian man was taken into custody on suspicion of mutilating a child.”
Female genital mutilation (FGM), also known as female cutting, is common practice in at least 30 – mainly African – countries, but is a criminal offence in Ireland.
The practice has no health benefits for girls and women and can cause severe bleeding and health problems, and later, potential childbirth complications and newborn deaths.
Infection is also a major worry for doctors treating cases.
Untreated infections can lead in some instances to death of the victim.
The maximum penalty under all sections of Irish law for the banned practice is a fine of up to €10,000 or imprisonment for up to 14 years or both.
A neighbour this morning said he was concerned when he saw the gardaí arrive at the apartment on Thursday evening.
He added: “I was [shocked] to see the police car outside and that is why I asked them what had happened but they didn’t tell me.”
The neighbour said he did not know the young family well.
He added: “I don’t know the family by name, I just say hello.
“The kids are not even five years, they are younger.
“I have been living on this road for one year now and they were living here before me.”
A police spokesman said: “Gardaí at Sundrive arrested a man in his early 30s in connection with an alleged assault.
“He is currently detained at Sundrive Garda Station.”