Berlin – Rabbis Urge German Jews To Continue Circumcisions Despite Court Ruling

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     President of the Conference of European Rabbis, Pinchas Goldschmidt (R), speaks next to rabbi Avichai Apel, board member of the German Orthodox Rabbi Conference in Berlin, Germany, 12 July 2012.EPA/STEPHANIE PILICKBerlin – The Conference of European Rabbis is calling on Germany’s Jewish community to continue circumcising baby boys, despite fears after a regional court ruled the practice amounted to bodily harm.

    Conference president Pinchas Goldschmidt told reporters Thursday, following an emergency meeting of some 40 rabbis in the German capital, that they had been assured that the ruling set no national precedent and that the government was looking into possible changes to the law to continue to clarify the issue.

    Calling circumcision “the foundation” of the Jewish faith, Goldschmidt said he hoped for such changes as soon as possible, saying “for us the deadline is not tomorrow, but yesterday.”

    In the meantime, however, he says, “we say to the Jewish community … keep performing the brit milah, and have no fear.”

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