Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) and Rep. Elliot Engel (D-NY) of the House Foreign Relations Committee have authored a letter urging Iceland to stop the “intolerant bill” that would criminalize religious circumcision. The letter addresses legislation that was introduced in the Icelandic parliament in February. If passed, the law could punish parents who circumcise their sons with up to six years in prison.
“If passed into law, this measure would create insurmountable challenges for Jews and Muslims living in Iceland,” the Representatives wrote. “The impact of this would be felt far beyond Iceland’s borders. … While Jewish and Muslim populations of Iceland may be small, your country’s ban could be exploited by those who stoke xenophobia and anti-Semitism in countries with more diverse populations.” Within a week of the bill being introduced in Iceland, a campaign was started to initiate a similar proposal in Denmark’s parliament.
The letter continues that criminalizing circumcision would send “a clear message to tourists, immigrants, and the world that Iceland is not a country fully accepting of different faiths and cultures.”
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