Two schools prohibit “any type of head-covering or political or religious symbol.” Any type: Everyone has to play by the same set of rules. Imagine that.
“Belgium: Top court upholds headscarf ban in schools,” from Adnkronos International, April 7:
Brussels, 7 April (AKI) – Belgium’s top administrative court, the Council of State has ruled that schools may ban girls from wearing the Muslim headscarf. The court said the ban was not discriminatory and reinforced the principles of equality and solidarity.
The Movement against Racism, anti-Semitism and Xenophobia (MRAX) however slammed the ruling as “ideological, factious and anti-democratic”.
It said the group was considering whether to appeal the ruling at the European Court of Human Rights or the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. It will decide on its course of action later this month.
MRAX had sought to outlaw a rule at two Belgian schools prohibiting pupils from wearing ‘any type of head-covering or political or religious symbol’.
Muslim women in the neighouring Netherlands last month formed a group to fight for the right to wear the heardscarf at work, after numerous employers told them it was against company policy.
Turkey’s Islamist-leaning government tried last tried to lift a ban on female students wearing the Muslim headscarf at university, but this was blocked by the country’s constitutional court.
The headscarf is a sensitive issue in officially secular Turkey, where it is seen as the symbol of political Islam.
Legislation is in place in France banning the wearing of religious symbols including the Muslim headscarf in public schools and offices.