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September 29, 2016 / 26 Elul, 5776
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Chancellor Merkel Pledges to Keep Circumcision Legal


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Chancellor Angela Merkel

Chancellor Angela Merkel
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After what German diplomats have described as a “disastrous” damage to Germany’s image abroad, especially in light of its Nazi past, it appears that Berlin has finally gotten the message.

(The JewishPress.com sent a petition with 12,000 signatures to the German Ambassador in Tel Aviv, declaring that “Germany has absolutely no moral or ethical right to pass any laws or make any statements regarding Brit Milah (circumcision) or on any other Jewish practice.”)

The German government on Friday pledged “quick action” to protect the right of Jews and Muslims to circumcise their boys, after a much protested court ruling to the contrary, AFP reports.

A spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters the Chancellor was “concerned” about the judgement passed by the Cologne court last month, which defined religious circumcision as a criminal act against the child.

“It is absolutely clear to the federal government that we want Jewish, we want Muslim religious life in Germany. Circumcisions carried out in a responsible way must not be subject to prosecution in this country,” the apokesman said, adding, “It is urgently necessary that we establish legal certainty. It is clear this cannot be put on the back burner. Freedom to practice religion is a cherished legal principle.”

According to AFP, the German justice ministry is considering three options for new draft legislation to protect circumcisions on religious grounds.

In an interview published Saturday in Die Welt, the leader of Merkel’s conservative parliamentary faction, Volker Kauder, called for a resolution on the right to ritual circumcision to be passed in the Bundestag next Thursday.

Jewish Press Staff

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