CATALUNYA’S plan to ban the burka is going ahead, after a controversial ruling from a European court.
Ramon Espadaler, Interior Minister for Catalunya, said the ban is not an attack on religious freedom, as wearing helmets and masks in public will also be forbidden.
The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that banning the veils does not breach human rights laws – basing its decision on a test case in France.
A new French law means citizens are not allowed to cover their faces in public places.
But a French woman in her mid-20s, who is a devout Muslim, complained that the new law – which came into force in 2011 – was discriminatory against religion, sex and ethnic origin.
But the European Court decided that promoting respect for the conditions in which people ‘live together’ in public places was a legitimate aim and did not breach the convention.
Following this ground-breaking ruling, Austria, Norway and Denmark may also follow suit.
The ban is expected to be approved at the end of summer.