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Turkey's Military Headscarf Ban Lifted

Image: Turkey's Military Headscarf Ban Lifted

Turkey has lifted a ban on the Islamic headscarf or hijab for women in the military. (Screengrab via Twitter)

By    |   Wednesday, 22 Feb 2017 02:53 PM

Turkey lifted its ban on headscarves in the military, enabling women officers in the Turkish military to wear Islamic-style scarves while on duty.

A Turkish defense official said on Wednesday that the change will apply to all women soldiers and military school students, according to The Associated Press.

This comes after the headscarf ban was previously removed for the military's civilian staff, coast guard members, and the paramilitary police force.

According to BBC News, headscarves were banned from being worn in public institutions in the 1980s.

However, those bans slowly began being lifted once Turkey’s Islamist-leaning president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, came into power, The Guardian noted.

The Turkish military was the last remaining institution that didn’t allow women to wear their headscarves while on duty.

Despite Islamic groups protesting over the years for these bans to be lifted, secularists have accused President Erdogan of pushing the Islamist agenda onto the people, especially in the schools, BBC News noted.

According to BBC’s Mark Lowen, secularists think Erdogan has showed favor toward conservatives and religious groups during his time in power. However, conservatives argue that this change has been long overdue.

The lift of the headscarf ban will go into effect for women military officers, non-commissioned officers and female cadets, but they’ll be required to wear a headscarf under their caps that matches the color of their uniforms, according to the Hurriyet Daily News.

The scarves will have to be plain in color, not containing any patterns.

The military has long opposed the wearing of headscarves but lost influence after a failed coup in July, The Guardian noted.

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Turkey lifted its ban on headscarves in the military, enabling women officers in the Turkish military to wear Islamic-style scarves while on duty.
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2017-53-22
Wednesday, 22 Feb 2017 02:53 PM
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