Tags: swiss | burqa | ban | referendum

Swiss Burqa Ban OK'd, Appears Headed for Referendum

Image: Swiss Burqa Ban OK'd, Appears Headed for Referendum

An anti-burqa poster of a right-wing Swiss political party. (AP Photo/Keystone, Salvatore Di Nolfi)

By    |   Wednesday, 28 Sep 2016 07:46 AM

A Swiss burqa ban was approved by one vote by legislators in a lower chamber on Tuesday, but probably is headed toward a public referendum.

The Switzerland Broadcasting Corp. said the proposed burqa passed the House 88-87, but it may have a difficult time passing in the country's Senate.

Walter Wobmann, a supporter of the burqa ban in parliament, said wearing a burqa and radical Islam must be seen as related issues since the identity of the person covered by the clothing is concealed.

Kurt Fluri, of Switzerland's Radical Party, argued that banning burqas – a full face and body covering with a grid covering the eyes – had nothing to do with security and that a public call for a referendum had already started.

According to Politico, the burqa ban proposal is similar to one passed by referendum in the Swiss Italian-speaking canton of Ticino and went into effect July 1.

Wobmann said the measure was needed to "maintain public order and respect for the dignity of women."

Those wearing burqas in Ticino face fines from $103 to $10,300, said Agence France-Presse.

An initiative has been started in Switzerland to collect 100,000 signatures by 2017 to trigger a referendum. Politico said a poll taken in August showed that more than 70 percent of Swiss supported a nationwide ban of the full-face burqa.

In August, France's highest administrative court ruled that several mayors who banned the so-called burkini – a full body bikini popular with some Muslim women – did not have the right to do so, said CNN.

The Collective Against Islamophobia in France had said it planned on suing each municipality maintaining the ban on the full-length swimsuit. France had suffered terrorist attacks from Muslim extremists in Paris and Nice over the past year.

There are roughly 350,000 Muslims living in Switzerland, which has a population of eight million, said AFP.

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A Swiss burqa ban was approved by one vote by legislators in a lower chamber on Tuesday, but probably is headed toward a public referendum.
swiss, burqa, ban, referendum
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2016-46-28
Wednesday, 28 Sep 2016 07:46 AM
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