FW: Sweden restricts circumcisions... [BBC News - Europe]
- -----Original Message-----
From: Brenda Lana Smith R.af D.
Sent: 01 October 2001 07:45
Subject: Sweden restricts circumcisions... [BBC News - Europe]
BBC News | EUROPE | Sweden restricts circumci...
Monday, 1 October, 2001, 04:11 GMT 05:11 UK
Sweden restricts circumcisions
A law passed by the Swedish Parliament restricting the circumcision of boys
goes into effect on Monday.
Circumcisions will now be allowed only under anaesthetic, and with a doctor
or nurse present.
Swedish Jews and Muslims object to the new law, saying it violates their
The law was introduced after a Muslim boy died while being circumcised.
But, according to the website of Stockholm's Jewish community, a government
commission appointed after the three-year-old's death found that the
circumcision had been carried out by a registered physician, and that the
cause of death was an overdose of aneasthetics.
Health benefits debated
A BBC science correspondent says there has been much debate over the medical
benefits of male circumcision - some studies say it reduces the chance of
contracting a sexually transmitted disease and improves hygiene levels,
while others show there to be no health benefit whatsoever.
A boy under the age of two months old may be circumcised by a person who is
not a registered physician provided that person has obtained special
authorization from the National Board of Health and Welfare
No boy may be circumcised without an anaesthetic, which must be administered
either by a registered physician or by a registered nurse
The new law comes into force on 1 October
Stockholm's Jewish community is now deciding how to take the matter further.
They say they will not be able to find nurses or doctors to help them
perform the ceremony because many health professionals in Sweden view
circumcision as a form of mutilation.
In its website, the community says that making circumcision impossible to
carry out in practice would make the Swedish-Jewish congregation, which is
already a small minority in Sweden, feel isolated and vulnerable.
It adds that it is in principle not the task of the Swedish non-Jewish
society to educate the Jewish minority.
"It is a scandal that the Riksdag [parliament], which has recently
recognised the Jewish group as a national minority, shortly after introduces
a restriction on Jewish life in Sweden, with unforeseeable consequences,"
the website said.
Kindly appreciate that Brenda Lana Smith R.af D.
<http://www.q.co.za/2001/menus/newsglobal.html> having had no editorial
input whatsoever in the above declines to entertain e-mail argument on its