German government set to pass bill legalizing ritual circumcision

( The German government is in the final stages of passing legislation that will legalize ritual circumcision if performed by a trained medical professional, the Times of Israel reported.

The bill comes three months after a German court in Cologne issued a ruling that banned circumcision, including religious circumcisions. Jewish and Muslim leaders at the time called the ban “an outrageous and insensitive act,” and both Israel’s president and chief rabbi also urged Germany to lift the ban. Charges were even brought against two Jewish rabbis who continued practicing circumcision.

Jewish leaders praised the pending legislation, which allows for traditional Jewish circumcisers, or mohelim, to be able to perform circumcisions if they possess the necessary medical training.

“It is a clear political signal that Jews and Muslim are still welcome in Germany,” said Dieter Graumann, the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. “We are happy that Jewish commandments and Jewish life are not being pushed into illegality.”

Posted on October 4, 2012 .