The South African government has halted the launch of a controversial male circumcision device known as Tara Klamps.

Health department spokesman Fidel Hadebe said that more research was needed into the plastic device.

The device has been used in the circumcision of 9,000 South African men since April as part of programme to stop the spread of AIDS.

Treatment Action Campaign, a Cape Town-based advocacy group for people with HIV, has termed the device as harmful and painful, and has welcomed the government’s decision.