Thursday, September 25, 2008

Poland premier's call for pedophile castration draws fire

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk's call for the forced chemical castration of convicted pedophiles is an attack on human rights, opposition parties said.

"What the prime minister said was a scandal," Ryszard Kalisz, a deputy for the Democratic Left Alliance, said in an interview today with Radio Tok FM. His comment that 'there are people in Poland who aren't human beings' violates the constitution entirely."

Tusk made his remarks after police arrested a man in the eastern Polish town of Siedlce on suspicion of sexually molesting his 21-year-old daughter for six years.

Tusk has vowed to push for new laws allowing for the forced castration of sentenced pedophiles, saying the legislation would be the toughest in Europe. While some other European Union members such as Denmark offer chemical castration for sexual offenders on a voluntary basis, none have made it obligatory.

The Helsinki Federation for Human Rights has criticized Tusk, saying medical treatment should not be forced on anyone and that nobody had the right to "state that any human was no longer a human."

Seventy-nine percent of Poles are in favor of chemical castration for pedophiles, according to a SMG/KRC survey of 1,000 Poles conducted on Sept. 10-11.