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New law to set conditions on circumcision

The Local · 26 Sep 2012, 08:23

Published: 26 Sep 2012 08:23 GMT+02:00

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The main points, which have been sent to regional authorities and concerned groups for discussion, allow circumcision with certain provisos including that it be carried out with the "most effective pain relief possible," a Justice Ministry spokesman said on Tuesday.

Parents must be fully informed beforehand about the procedure, which may not be carried out in cases where a child's well-being is at risk. An example would be if a child were a haemophiliac.

The outline also states that, as a rule, circumcisions are to be conducted by doctors but can also be done on a baby up to six months old by someone chosen by their religious community.

That person must be as skilled at circumcision as a doctor, it says.

"Circumcision remains permitted in Germany," the spokesman said, referring to the outlines for the new law.

"The regulation is to remove the uncertainty after the judgement of the Cologne court," he added.

The court's ruling published in June, that circumcision was tantamount to grievous bodily harm, united Jewish and Muslim groups in opposition and caused uproar from religious and political leaders in Israel and Muslim countries.

Diplomats have admitted that the ruling has proved "disastrous" for Germany's international image, particularly in light of its Nazi past, and the debate even prompted the former head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Charlotte Knobloch, to question whether the country still wanted a Jewish community.

Story continues below…

About four million Muslims and more than 200,000 Jews live in Germany.

The Justice Ministry will hold a hearing with expert testimony on the issue on Friday, the Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper said.

AFP/The Local/mbw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

12:38 September 26, 2012 by Repatriated
The spineless German politician capitulate again under Muslim and Jewish pressure to reinstate circumcision.

Circumcision is customarily performed on newborn, so if the law now still allows circumcisions to be conducted on a baby up to six months old by someone chosen by their religious community then nothing has really changed...the infant still comes up on the short end of the stick because of some stupid religious belief from the dark ages..

Shame on the politicians for being so spineles.
15:29 September 26, 2012 by vonSchwerin
Calling all the Anti-Semites and self-righteous Secular Humanists registered with The Local!!!

This article is your chance to vent your fury on two minority communities in Germany. Tell us how anyone who disagrees with your viewpoint is a barbarian living in the Middle Ages. Tell us how their cultures and traditions are inferior and even un-European. Explain how they need to conform to your view of how modern German society should be or they should go back to their home countries where people live backward, benighted lives.

And then go enjoy your Döner Kebab as you watch Mesut ízil on TV or eat a Bagel while you complain about the Chuzpe of these people.
16:14 September 26, 2012 by laurencelewis
@von Schwerin

A growing proportion of people are choosing to distance themselves from religious tradition (not just Judaism), and are choosing to be vocal about their stances. This is something you cannot avoid. You can either fight against them, choosing to be offended by their sometimes uncouth monologues, or you can attempt to understand their alternate standpoint, and maybe achieve compromise and reconciliation. The nonsense you wrote above will not help you, but only crystallise opinion against you and the religion you represent. The inability to convince people of the need for religion and its traditions (such as circumcision) is a failure on your part, not ours.
18:43 September 26, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
Jeeeez, he is an evil looking man with an evil looking contraption. I pity the poor children who come up face to face with this.
20:32 September 26, 2012 by JOHNATAN
Von Scwerin

I see your point,unfortuntly the Jews or the Moslems who live in Germany are the minorities,and the majority has decided they do not like this kind of the practice,if it is going to finish just with circumcision? who knows? but the one who lives in that country must obay to the laws of that country.

But if I would as part of minority feel that my religion rights are limited I would certainly find another place to live, that depend of how much my religion rules is important to my life.
21:26 September 26, 2012 by Englishted
I hope someone will take this further to the European courts because I for one don't like legalised child abuse on any grounds.
22:15 September 26, 2012 by DrWho

Typical. Disagree and you must be an anti-whatever or a whatever-phobe. All your namecalling does is supress free thought and discussion. I guess that is your aim anyway.
02:51 September 27, 2012 by mikerol
It's time to eliminate the Brit Milah because if that is the chief reason for being anti-Semitic

or anti-Abrahamic [Islam too practices the rite]then why hang

on to this left-over of human sacrifice? that traumatizes

the child, cutting off 5,000 nerves, and only serves the Ultra

Orthodox to maintain their power? After all, reform Judaism

sought to eliminate the rite in the 19th century, and

Jewish identity depends on being born by a Jewish mother,

or converting. Here a link to an archive of the entire German and then some debate, note especially Michael Wolffsohn's two pieces . Circumcision has been controversial also within Jewry forever.


Eine Diskussion ueber das Thema, mit drei Deutschen + einem Amerikanischen Psychologen.





hMember Seattle Psychoanalytic Institute and Society
21:42 September 27, 2012 by Holzapfel
@ vonSchwerin

Labelling supporters of the ban on circumcision of non-consenting minors "anti-Semites" doesn't make any sense. The thing is this: If I hated Jews, then I would certainly be in favour of cutting off their skin against their will.
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