Kasinga (plaintiff) was born in Togo and lived there until she was 17. Other female members of her tribe normally underwent female genital mutilation (FGM) when they were 15 years old. Kasinga did not undergo FGM because of the influence of her father. When her father died, his sister took charge of the family and forced Kasinga into a polygamous marriage with a 45-year old man. Kasinga testified that her aunt and husband were going to force her to undergo FGM. Kasigna then fled to Ghana, then to Germany, and finally to the United States where she requested asylum.