France moves towards partial ban on full veil | world | Hindustan Times
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France moves towards partial ban on full veil

France will on Tuesday take the first step towards barring Muslim women from wearing the full veil when using public services, but will stop short of calling for an outright ban after critics argued that such a move would be socially divisive and hard to enforce.

world Updated: Jan 27, 2010 00:39 IST

France will on Tuesday take the first step towards barring Muslim women from wearing the full veil when using public services, but will stop short of calling for an outright ban after critics argued that such a move would be socially divisive and hard to enforce.

A cross-party committee of MPs was set up last year to explore the controversial issue in France of burkas and niqabs. The committee will recommend to parliament that Muslim women should be allowed to continue covering their faces in the street.

Its final report will, however, recommend that anyone covering their face be barred from entering public sector property, including hospitals and schools, or using public transport.

“The full veil is the visible part of this black tide of fundamentalism,” said Communist MP Andre Gerin, the committee’s president, in an interview last week.

Eric Raoult, a rightwing MP heavily involved in the report, said on Monday that the imposition of a full ban would have to wait. “We have tried to do something that is coherent and enforceable,” he said.