Italy Government Seeks Veil Ban

November 7, 2006

Author: Christian Fraser

Source: BBC News

Italy is to put forward draft new legislation to ban the Islamic veil that covers the face.

Vice-premier Francesco Rutelli says current laws are insufficient.

The niqab and the burka have aroused concerns, not least because Italy has a law - intended to foil terrorism - against wearing masks in public.

Mr Rutelli has now entered the debate, calling for a change in Italian law which would make the wearing of the niqab an offence.

"If you look at the laws that are currently in place, they're not sufficient," he said.

"We need a new law, one that respects people's rights in our society but at the same time makes it quite clear that it's not acceptable for people to cover their faces."