A leading Islamic doctor is urging British Muslims not to vaccinate their children against diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella because they contain substances making them unlawful for Muslims to take.
Dr Abdul Majid Katme, head of the Islamic Medical Association, says almost all vaccines contain un-Islamic "haram" derivatives of animal or human tissue, and that Muslim parents are better off letting childrens' immune systems develop on their own.
Dr Katme, an NHS psychiatrist, said: "If you breastfeed your child for two years - as the Koran says - and you eat Koranic food like olives and black seed, and you do ablution each time you pray, then you will have a strong defence system."
The Department of Health and the British Medical Association have criticised Dr Katme, saying his suggestions are likely to increase infection rates of children in Muslim communities. Other Muslim groups have also condemned the suggestion.
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