The Conference of European Rabbis announced the founding of the Union of Mohalim in Europe (UME). The Union will bring together certified mohalim from all over Europe to ensure that milah is performed to the highest medical and halachic standards. The new organization will be an independent legal entity registered in Austria and will be under the supervision of HaRav Chanoch Hacohen Ehrentreu, the av beis din of Europe.
Rabbi Shlomoh Hopfmeister, president of the new organization, said, "The Union will enable us to certify European mohalim and to publish and advance high standards of excellence in a field whose very existence has been threatened by opponents of circumcision, who use every opportunity to criticize. The ongoing debate about ritual circumcision in Europe requires a new level of defense."
Spokesmen for the Union are Shimon Cohen of London and Professor Herman Loonstein of Amsterdam. Dr. Joseph Spitzer of London is the union's medical director.