Sri Lanka’s cabinet has passed a bill banning the burqa and face mask. The country’s security minister said it was necessary for national security.
Sri Lanka’s cabinet has approved a bill banning the burqa and face veil for Muslim women, citing national security concerns. Security Minister Verascara announced the passage of the bill at a weekly meeting.
Despite UN experts criticizing the bill and calling it a violation of international law, Sri Lanka’s Minister of Security announced a ban on the face veil, including the burqa. Sri Lanka’s Minister for Security Affairs Veraskara announced this on his Facebook page.
Sri Lanka’s security minister says burqa is a garment that covers the body and face of Muslim women who adorn it, is religious extremism and banning it will improve national security.
The burqa was temporarily banned following the terrorist attacks on the church on the 2019 Christian holiday of Easter Sunday.
There were 260 deaths in these terrorist attacks. In Sri Lanka, two local Muslim groups declaring allegiance to ISIS or the IS group were accused of attacking the churches.
The Muslim population of Sri Lanka
In Sri Lanka, Muslims make up 9% of the country’s 22 million population, while Buddhists make up 70%. The ethnic minority Tamil group, which consists mostly of Hindus, makes up 15% of the country’s total population.
Earlier this month, Sri Lanka banned 11 local and international Muslim organizations for allegedly spreading extremism. President Raja Paksha had announced a ban on these organizations under an Act enacted to curb terrorism.
Al-Qaeda organizations that have been banned by order of President Raja Paksha include the Islamic State, or ISIS, and the international terrorist network al-Qaeda.
In addition, nine local groups were banned. At the same time, heavy fines have been imposed on them. In addition, violations of the rules can result in up to 20 years in prison, despite court proceedings.
It has also been decided to criminalize and punish acts such as serving, leading or promoting members of banned organizations. The President of Sri Lanka may also issue orders to freeze the assets of these organizations.