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The right to wear the Burka?
Article in images

Banning the burka - alienating Muslim communities?


 - Banning the burka - alienating Muslim communities?
View from inside the Burka © Becky Middleton
Alienating Muslim communities
Many fear that governments in France and Belgium have risked alienating their Muslim communities by banning the Burka.

Muslim journalist Elham Kani agrees: 'I believe it will have a very serious impact on Muslims; many consider it an Islamophobic law and unfortunately it will result in alienating Muslim communities further. [The ban] does worry me because it makes the system in those countries seem as if they are heading towards a dictatorship by targeting a group of people for their religious beliefs.'
Worryingly, Muktari explains how she often feels victimized when she wears a Burka, and has to regularly deal with verbal abuse from men in the street. But she feels lucky compared to some of her friends, many of whom have been physically attacked by strangers.

Do Muslims feel victimized? 
“One of my friends had a man come up to her and try and suffocate her with her Niqab... I know that it [the Burka] can seem alien to society, so I go out of my way to try and be nicer to people to accommodate them so that they feel more comfortable around me.'

'We do feel victimized and we do want to participate in society, but when politicians say things about banning the burka, it means that when I step out of my house I’m going to be targeted.'

As a result she says women who wear the burka often stay at home and end up feeling like prisoners.


Women in Focus Editor
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