Tunisia’s mufti supports possible face-veil ban
The Mufti’s stance comes three days after the Interior Ministry said it was taking strict measures against women wearing the niqab
Sheikh Hamda Saeed, Tunisia’s mufti, has declared his support of banning the face-covering niqab garment on security grounds, three days after the Interior Ministry said it was taking strict measures against women wearing the veil, news agency UPI reported.
Sheikh Saeed told reporters on Monday that sect community leaders had the right to limit things that are permissible if they find this to be in the best interests of the nation.
The Mufti’s stance, which is considered a religious edict, comes three days after an announcement from the Interior Ministry that it will apply strict measures against any person who dons a niqab, in a move aiming at dealing with the growing terror threat, and to prevent wanted criminals wearing it to avoid being identified at security checkpoints.
“The Ministry of Interior will strictly control every person wearing a niqab within the framework of the law,” the ministry said in a press release.
Interior Minister Lotfi Ben Jeddo has repeatedly stated that a number of wanted persons use the niqab as a disguise, but said that a total ban against the garment would be a political decision not within the Ministry’s mandate.
He noted that the niqab has become increasingly popular in the past three years, since the collapse of the former Tunisian President Zein al-Abidine Ben Ali’s regime in 2011.