Swiss Hospitals 'Evaluating' Circumcision

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- Two hospitals in Switzerland have suspended infant male circumcision, following a ruling by a German district court last month banning the procedure.

"We are in the process of evaluating the legal and ethical stance in Switzerland," AFP quoted Marco Stuecheli, spokesman for the children's hospital in Zurich.

"Most Jewish patients go to specialist doctors known within their community," Stuecheli added.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel denounced the ruling, saying it would make Germany the "laughing stock" of the world community.

On Thursday, German parliamentarians adopted a motion protecting religious circumcision, saying the court's ruling damaged Germany's international image, particularly in view of its Nazi past.

"The resolution shows that we live in a tolerant and cosmopolitan country," AFP quoted German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle. "No one in the world would understand if Germany banned its Jewish citizens from having their boys circumcised."

Male Jewish babies are circumcised when they're eight days old as part of the Abrahamic covenant described in Genesis 17:10-14.

In Hebrew, the ceremony is called brit milah (the covenant of circumcision).

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