Parents can name son 'holy war,' says German court
A German court ruled that the name Djehad, which means holy war in Arabic, had "very strong negative connotations" after the attacks of September 11, 2001 but that it was essentially "harmless."
Berlin -- A German court has upheld the right of a German-Egyptian man to call his young son Djehad, a name that means holy war in Arabic, a court official told AFP on Wednesday.
The court in Berlin said the name, often transcribed as Jihad and a common name in the Muslim world, had "very strong negative connotations" after the attacks of September 11, 2001 but that it was essentially "harmless."
"With the choice of the first name 'Djehad' for their son, the parents have not endangered the well-being of the child," the court ruled.
It added: "The fact that radical Islamists have recently used the word in the sense of an armed struggle against non-believers using terrorist means changes nothing."
The father of the boy, Reda Seyam, brought the case before the court after officials had refused to allow him to enter the name in the registry of births.
The 49-year-old Seyam was charged by Munich prosecutors last week with incitement to racial hatred and membership of a banned organisation, prosecutor's office spokeswoman Barbara Stockinger told AFP.