Denmark gov’t to prevent non-medical circumcision
COPENHAGEN- Agence France-Presse
An Indonesian man holds down his crying son as a doctor performs a circumcision. AP photoDenmark has commissioned a report into whether male circumcision is always carried out in line with national health guidelines, the prime minister said Aug. 23.
“We must make sure that things take place in a proper way. And the government is taking the initiative to do so. We will investigate whether the National Board of Health recommendations are being met,” Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt told national daily Politiken Online.
Controversy surrounding the non-medical circumcision of young boys arose earlier this summer when Danish media revealed that the National Board of Health did not monitor the conditions under which circumcision takes place.
Denmark’s Chief Rabbi Bent Lexner said that a doctor is always present during circumcision, which under the Jewish rite is carried out by a rabbi. “Our register goes back 250 years and we can document every single circumcision. A journal is also kept in connection with the circumcision itself. The doctor who is present keeps a record of what happens,” Lexner told Politiken.
The spokeswoman for the Danish Society of the Islamic Faith said medical assistance was also always present for the circumcision of Muslim boys. “We have always used medical help in connection with circumcision, and it is not necessary for us to have religious personnel present during circumcision,” spokeswoman Bettina Meisner told TV2News.