BERLIN - Germany's cabinet approved a draft law on Wednesday protecting the right to circumcise infant boys, which it says will end months of legal uncertainty after a local court banned the practice, causing outrage among Muslims and Jews.

The June ruling by a Cologne district court that circumcision constitutes "bodily harm" sparked an emotional national debate about religious freedom and the procedure itself.

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An embarrassed German government pledged to bring in new legislation by the autumn to safeguard the right of parents to have their sons circumcised.