12 September 2018

Austrians react to government’s headscarf plan

Austrians have reacted to a plan by the education minister to expand the headscarf ban for students and teachers to secondary schools.

Education Minister Heinz Fassmann said on Monday that the issue should be discussed throughout the country, especially in the parliament.

Speaking on Austrian state television ORF about a draft law to ban Muslim girls from wearing headscarves in kindergartens and primary schools, Fassmann said it is not yet known how many girls are wearing headscarves in the institutions in question.

However the ban is not related to the number, it is related to its content, he said.

The ban should be put in force for free education and protection of girls, Fassmann added.

"It is not just me and the ministry," Fassmann said, adding political parties, especially the parliament, must express their view on the headscarf ban for secondary schools and build a social consensus.

.... Another activist Michael Probsting blamed the far-right government of having a racist and Islamophobic attitude towards Muslims, which is an important minority group in the country.

“A headscarf ban is a violation of human rights, religious rights, and free-thinking,” he said. [Anadolu Agency] Read more