Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

The highs and lows of Cannes for the critics

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Remembering our friend and colleague Jean Karim Fall

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Bad diplomacy, brawls & bromance

Read more

ENCORE!

Cannes 2017: Pitch Perfect's Brittany Snow becomes an urban warrior

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

US President wraps up world tour in Italy (Part 1)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

US President wraps up world tour in Italy (Part 2)

Read more

FOCUS

The battle against illegal fishing in West Africa

Read more

DOWN TO EARTH

Trump has already quit the Paris climate deal - just not publicly

Read more

#TECH 24

The Ice Memory Project: A treasure trove for future scientists

Read more

Africa

Morocco bans production and sale of burqas for security reasons

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2017-01-11

Morocco has banned the production and sale of burqa full-face Muslim veils, apparently for security reasons, media reports said Tuesday.

While there was no official announcement by authorities in the North African nation, the reports said the interior ministry order would take effect this week.

"We have taken the step of completely banning the import, manufacture and marketing of this garment in all the cities and towns of the kingdom," the Le360 news site quoted a high-ranking interior ministry official as saying.

It said the measure appeared to be motivated by security concerns, "since bandits have repeatedly used this garment to perpetrate their crimes."

Most women in Morocco, whose King Mohammed VI favours a moderate version of Islam, prefer the hijab headscarf that does not cover the face.

The niqab, which leaves the area around the eyes uncovered, is also worn in Salafist circles and in more conservative regions in the north, from where thousands of jihadists have gone to fight in Syria and Iraq.

In some commercial districts of Casablanca, the country's economic capital, interior ministry officials on Monday conducted "awareness-raising campaigns with traders to inform them of this new decision," the Media 24 website said.

In Taroudant in southern Morocco, authorities ordered traders to stop making and selling burqas and to liquidate their stock within 48 hours, the reports said.

Retailers in the northern town of Ouislane were said to have received similar instructions.

It was unclear if Morocco plans to follow in the footsteps of some European countries such as France and Belgium where it is illegal to wear full veils in public.

The reports were met with a muted response in the absence of official confirmation, though Salafists expressed concern that the measure could be expanded to include the niqab.

"Is Morocco moving towards banning the niqab that Muslim women have worn for five centuries?" Salafist sheikh Hassan Kettani wrote on Facebook.

"If true it would be a disaster," he added.

(AFP)

Date created : 2017-01-11

  • THE NETHERLANDS

    Dutch parliament approves partial ban on full-face veils

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Wear a veil or be French: Hollande shocks with views on Muslims and migrants

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French dedication to secularism fuels both sides of burkini debate

    Read more

COMMENT(S)