MPs from five different political parties in Iceland have proposed a ban on the circumcision of boys.
The bill, which has been submitted to the country’s parliament, suggests a six-year prison term for anyone found guilty of “removing sexual organs in whole or in part”.
Circumcising girls has been illegal in Iceland since 2005, but there are currently no laws to regulate the practice against boys.
Describing circumcision as a “violation” of young boys’ rights, the bill states the only time it should be considered is for “health reasons”.
Addressing religious traditions, it insists the “rights of the child” always exceed the “right of the parents to give their children guidance when it comes to religion”.
Children, though, would be given the opportunity to decide for themselves once they reached the age of consent. Although the bill fails to make clear how old this would be, the age of sexual consent in Iceland is 15.
The legislation was put forward by eight of Iceland's 63-member parliament, including MPs from the Progressive Party - part of the ruling coalition in Reykjavik - the Pirate Party, the Left Greens – also in coalition – and the People’s Party.
The move follows advice from doctors in Denmark, who have said boys under the age of 18 should not be circumcised.
The Danish Medical Association said it had considered suggesting a legal ban on the procedure for children
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