Minister moots Islamic veil ban in schools, universities

Europe’s battle over public attire for Muslim women moved recently from the outcry over banning ‘burkinis’ in France to a strong call from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s governing conservative bloc for a ban in Germany on face veils in schools and universities and while driving, writes Alison Smaleaug for The New York Times.

The German proposal, announced by the interior minister, Thomas de Maizière, was clearly driven by an intensifying political season and a surge in support for the far right since Germany accepted more than a million migrants last year. There has been mounting public anxiety over integrating the newcomers, who are mostly from Muslim countries, particularly after a series of terrorist assaults and a gun rampage last month.

The German plan arrives on the heels of a heated debate in France over the burkini – a full-body swimsuit with a head covering. The proposals now being floated in Germany around restricting the burqa make it clear that France is not the only European country grappling with whether some Islamic coverings amount to a barrier to the full participation of women in Western society.
Full report on The New York Times site