Babylon & Beyond

Observations from Iraq, Iran,
Israel, the Arab world and beyond

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MUSLIM WORLD: German doctor refuses to treat teen named Jihad

February 6, 2010 |  7:32 am

An orthodontist in southern Germany has refused to treat a 16-year-old whose first name is Jihad, which is Arabic for holy struggle or holy war, because she took offense at his name, reports the Deutsche Presse-Agentur (in German), citing a local magazine. 

The name, popular among Muslims worldwide and even used by some Christians in the Middle East, has become controversial because militant groups often incorporate it into their names and use it as a rally cry.

In retrospect, the doctor said she regretted her decision. 

"He can't help it if his parents named him so," she was quoted as saying.

-- Borzou Daragahi in Beirut