Denmark's chief rabbi: No legal ban on circumcision

Rabbi Yair Melchior clarifies that the Danish Medical Association didn't recommend a legal ban on circumcision before age 18.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Circumcision (illustration)
Circumcision (illustration)
Flash 90

Rabbi Yair Melchior, the chief of rabbi of Denmark and a member of the Council of European Rabbis, clarified on Wednesday evening that the Danish Medical Association did not recommend a legal ban on circumcision before the age of 18.

The clarification came following reports in the media that the Danish Medical Association had considered suggesting a legal ban on the procedure for children under the age of 18, because it believed circumcision should be “an informed, personal choice” that young men make for themselves.

“The Danish Medical Association issued a statement in which it said that it is ethically wrong to circumcise a person without his consent as an adult. But in the same statement they also made clear they do not want legislation that will bring with it serious consequences,” said Rabbi Melchior.

“The Jewish community spoke out strongly against this statement as did the chairman of the Danish Council of Ethics, who said that this is not an ethical issue and that parents can choose for their children,” he continued.

“It is important to clarify there is no legislation on the matter. The Government of Denmark in an official letter to the United Nations declared that circumcision is one of the human rights of minorities in Denmark, and that it has no intention to change anything with regards to that,” said Rabbi Melchior.

“The position of most parties in parliament is that if no medical harm is caused, there is no need to ban circumcision,” he concluded.

A report in The Guardian on the issue did, in fact, note that the doctors stopped short of calling for an all-out legal ban on the procedure because it said the move could have too many negative consequences.