Syria bans 'niqab' from universities

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Damascus (Syria), July 20(ANI): Syria has banned the 'niqab', the Islamic face-covering veil from, the country's universities to prevent what it sees as a threat to its secular identity.

According to a government official, the Syrian Education Ministry issued the ban on Sunday.

"We have given directives to all universities to ban niqab-wearing women from registering," The Guardian quoted the official, as saying.

"The niqab contradicts university ethics," he added.

He also confirmed that hundreds of primary school teachers who were wearing the niqab at government-run schools were transferred last month to administrative jobs.

The ban, which affects public and private universities, is only against the niqab and not headscarves, which are far more commonly worn by Syrian women.

Earlier on July 13, France's lower house of parliament had approved a ban on wearing burqa-style Islamic veils in an effort to define and protect French values. (ANI)

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