Two German states reject hijab ban

The legislatures in two German states have turned down proposals by the opposition Christian Democratic Party to ban Muslim school teachers from wearing hijab. The parliament of Nordrhein-Westfalen, western Germany, rejected the party’s  request as having no legal merit.

The Christian Democratic Party claimed that hijab places woman at a lower status and was a political symbol not entrenched in the Muslims’ holy book, the Noble Qur’an. Thomas Kufen, the party’s immigration affairs officer, alleged that disputes could emerge in schools over the issue of hijab and that a legislation was needed. The party, yet, said nuns should be exempted for any ban on religious dress codes.

The Socialist and the Green parties, the ruling coalition, as well as the Free Democratic Party had opposed the proposals. They particularly took issue at the Christian Democratic Party’s attempt to exempt nuns’ wear from the ban as a violation of the constitution which demands equal treatment for citizens irrespective of their religious affiliations.

Islam Online, 24 March 2005