Sri Lanka's government said Tuesday it would take time to consider a proposed ban on the wearing of burqas, which a top security official called a sign of religious extremism.
Sri Lanka’s minister of public security, Sarath Weerasekara, said Saturday he was seeking Cabinet approval to ban burqas - a garment worn by some Muslim women covering the body and face - a move he said would have a direct impact on national security.
However, government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said a ban was a serious decision requiring consultation and consensus. "It will be done in consultation. So, it requires time,” he said without elaborating, at the weekly media briefing held to announce the cabinet decisions.
Earlier, a Pakistani diplomat and United Nations expert expressed concern over Sri Lanka's proposal to ban the wearing of the burqas. Pakistan's ambassador to Sri Lanka, Saad Khattak, tweeted on Monday that the ban would "only serve as injury to the feelings of ordinary Sri Lankan Muslims and Muslims across the globe.”
The U.N.'s special rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Ahmed Shaheed, tweeted that the "burqa bans are incompatible with int’l law guarantees of the right to manifest one’s religion or belief & of freedom of expression.”
The wearing of burqas in Sri Lanka was temporarily banned in 2019 soon after the Easter Sunday bomb attacks on churches and hotels that killed more than 260 people in the Indian Ocean island nation.
Sri Lanka also plans to ban more than 1,000 Madrassas, saying they are not registered with the authorities and do not follow the national education policy. The decision to ban burqas and madrassas is the latest move affecting Sri Lanka's minority Muslims.
Muslims make up about 9% of the 22 million people in Sri Lanka, where Buddhists account for more than 70% of the population. Ethnic minority Tamils, who are mainly Hindus, comprise about 15% of the population.
Please click to read our informative text prepared pursuant to the Law on the Protection of Personal Data No. 6698 and to get information about the cookies used on our website in accordance with the relevant legislation.
6698 sayılı Kişisel Verilerin Korunması Kanunu uyarınca hazırlanmış aydınlatma metnimizi okumak ve sitemizde ilgili mevzuata uygun olarak kullanılan çerezlerle ilgili bilgi almak için lütfen tıklayınız.