Friday, September 16, 2011

Face-Covering Veils Ban Proposed in the Netherlands

Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte says the government has drafted legislation to ban face-covering veils such as the burqa worn by some Muslim women. The draft law will be sent to the government's legal advisory body, the Council of State, prior to lawmakers voting on the measure, a process that is likely to take a number of months.

COMMENT: A government spokesperson said earlier today that the ban is aimed at "protecting the character and customs of public life in the Netherlands." If enacted, the Netherlands will join France and Belgium in outlawing face-covering veils. Although Islamic headscarves are increasingly common on Dutch streets, only a small number of women wear burqas.

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