Chechen President Calls for Women to Wear Head Scarves, Latest Nod Toward Islamic Tradition

November 21, 2007

Author: Musa Sadulayev

Source: San Diego Union-Tribune

Wire Service: AP

The president of Chechnya has called for all women to cover their heads with scarves, the latest in a series of his unofficial orders toughening social customs for women in the violence-wracked, mainly Muslim Russian region.

The recommendation by President Ramzan Kadyrov during a TV address last week was not a legally binding order or legislation passed by the regional parliament.

However, several government institutions in the capital of Grozny, including the main government-owned publishing house, posted signs earlier this week forbidding women without head scarves from entering, and guards were enforcing the rule.

Human rights activists reported that at least two universities had also barred women without covered heads from attending classes.