Israel urges Merkel to fight German circumcision ban

( The recent decision to file criminal charges against a German rabbi for presiding over a Jewish circumcision (brit) continues to reverberate across the world and Israel.

A day after Israel’s Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger met with German lawmakers to lobby against the criminalization of the custom, Interior Minister Eli Yishai (Shas) wrote a letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel urging her to protect Jews’ freedom of worship, Israel Hayom reported. Yishai sent a copy of the letter to the German justice minister as well.

“As deputy prime minister, as the interior minister and as the head of the largest religious party [in Israel], and— above all—as a Jew, I call on you to end the abuse of the [German] justice system; please make sure that Jews are once again allowed to lead a rich and proud life according to Jewish traditions in your country,” Yishai wrote.

Rabbi David Goldberg, a mohel in Hof in northern Bavaria, was recently accused by a German doctor of engaging in the outlawed practice (the ruling is binding only in Bavaria). Goldberg dismissed the allegations against him, telling Israel Hayom that the person who filed the complaint was an “anti-Semitic physician who filed criminal charges against me for allegedly committing bodily harm to children and maiming them. In Germany, once a complaint is filed, the chief prosecutor in the city has to decide whether to move to the trial phase; I hope he drops this case.”

Posted on August 23, 2012 .