RADIO NETHERLANDS, Hilversum, Thursday, 7 October 2004.

Justice Minister against outlawing circumcision

Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner sees no reason to make male circumcision illegal. Conservative MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali asked the cabinet to see if the circumcision of boys could be made illegal as well as female circumcision.

Minister Donner says there is a clear difference: with male circumcision the foreskin is removed for religious, hygienic or medical reasons and is not a traumatic procedure. Female circumcision, on the other hand, is a form of genital mutilation with serious physical and psychological consequences and can therefore be classified as an abuse.

(File revised 8 October 2004)