Denmark may enact French burqa ban

Legal experts weigh in on the possibility of a law prohibiting face veils in public

(photo: Stephen Wright)
July 2nd, 2014 11:25 am| by admin
facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail

A ban on people wearing clothing that covers their face in public, like a burqa or niqab, may find its way to Denmark following a landmark decision at the European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday.

Judges upheld France's burqa law, accepting the argument that veils threatened the right of citizens to live together in society. 

And now, several legal experts have told Berlingske newspaper that they believe a similar ban could be enacted in Denmark.

French model could work
Sten Schaumburg-Müller, a law professor at Aarhus University, agreed that the French model could be adopted by Denmark.

"It's obvious that a ban specifically targeting burqas would be hopeless," he said. 

"But I believe a ban similar to France's prohibiting the covering of the face in public could be established here."

Not aimed at Muslims
Jacob Mchangama, the head of think-tank Justitia, also believes the law could be recycled on Danish ground.

"The defining element in the French legislation is that it isn't targeted at specific religions, but instead the motivation is to ensure social cohesion and interaction between citizens," he said. 

DF considers third proposal
Pia Kjærsgaard, the DF values spokesperson, thinks a ban on face-covering dress, whether it is specifically targeting Islamic burqas or not, should be introduced in Denmark.

"We can't have women being completely covered so you can't see their facial expressions or who you have right in front of you," she told Berlingske.

If Kjærsgaard takes the question to parliament, it will be the third time DF has proposed a burqa ban, as two similar laws were considered in 2004 and 2009. However, neither of them was passed.

Besides France, only two other European countries – Belgium and the Netherlands –  have passed bans targeting Muslim face veils.

Police remained present at the scene until the situation calmed (photo: Heb)
Bloody brawl in Helsingør sends young man to hospital
A 19-year-old man was flown by helicopter to Rigshospitalet on Tuesday even...
The decision could lead to Ryanair flights being grounded in Copenhagen (photo: iStock)
UPDATE: Ryanair shuts down Copenhagen base
The Irish budget airline Ryanair has decided to close its Copenhagen hub wi...
As per usual, there is no shortage of nudity at this year's festival (All photos: Johan Karpantschof)
Roskilde Festival ’15 off to a flying start
Depending on your stamina, you're either nursing a hangover for the fourth...
Mansour is the first person in history to be stripped of their Danish citizenship over a crime (photo: Magnus Manske)
‘Bookseller from Brønshøj’ stripped of his Danish citizenship
Said Mansour, the now ex-Danish/Moroccan citizen who was earlier this year ...
Denmark's new government wants to curb the rising asylum numbers (photo: Matteo Penna)
Government unveils tougher asylum proposal
The Venstre-led government has agreed with blue-bloc parties Dansk Folkepar...
Pia Kjærsgaard will take over from Mogens Løkketoft (photo: Brandsen)
Pia Kjærsgaard to be named new speaker of Parliament
The former head of Dansk Folkeparti, Pia Kjærsgaard, will be named the new...