Israeli Supreme Court Backs Work of Irish Scientist on Fluoride

Fluoridation of the water supply in Israel is to end by 2014, following a landmark decision by the country's highest judicial authority

In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court in Israel has ruled that all public water fluoridation in the state of Israel must cease by 2014.

The court's ruling is remarkable in that it goes even further than – and thus overturns – the decision taken earlier this year by Isreal's Minister for Health, Yael German, who had legislated for an end to mandatory fluoridation, leaving the option open to local councils to fluoridate water supplies at their own discretion. Now, however, by order of the Supreme Court, fluoridation in Israel is definitively at an end. This is regarded as a crucial victory by anti-fluoridation campaigners, especially given the close diplomatic and economic links between Israel and the US – the original home of the policy of fluoridation.

The decision is a further vindication of the work of Irish scientist Declan Waugh, who has been directly involved in the campaign to end fluoridation in Israel.

Waugh had alerted the Israeli Minister for Health to the risks associated with fluoride, outlining how within less than a decade of commencement of water fluoridation, inflammatory respiratory diseases such as asthma had increased by 100% in young adults in Israel. Since commencement of water fluoridation in Ireland in the late 1960s, the prevalence of asthma has increased by 500% – it now affects approximately half a million people and one in five children 12 years of age in this country. Ireland now has one of the highest prevalences of asthma in the world, levels that are only to be found in fluoridated countries.

“Scientific studies have clearly demonstrated that Fluoride is a pro-inflammatory agent that can contribute to all inflammatory diseases, not just asthma,” Waugh told Hot Press.

The decision will put further pressure on the Irish government to finally properly address the serious health issues surrounding the mandatory fluoridation of the water supply. Ireland is the only country in Europe which enforces a policy of mandatory fluoridation of the national water supply.

Throughout 2013, Hot Press has been carrying a series of investigative articles into the practice, written by Adrienne Murphy, and in our current issue we have posed 27 Questions of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland on the issue. In a related article in the current issue, Hot Press has also highlighted huge – and on the face of it inexplicable – differences between the data on fluoride in tea (among other foodstuffs) provided by the FSAI and that which is available in numerous international studies.

As part of the same investigation, a group of British scientists who carried out independent tests on tea and found the fluoride content to be higher than the FSAI's figure by a multiple of ten, have called on the Irish government to carry out an urgent review of its policy of mandatory fluoridation.

Over the past year, Declan Waugh has also assisted communities in New Zealand, Australia, Canada and in parts of the USA in ending decades of fluoridation, as well as – in particular cases – preventing fluoridation programmes from commencing.

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