Denmark is preparing a ban on full-face coverings such as the niqab and the burqa after a majority of parliament backed a law change Friday.
A majority of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have announced their intention to vote in favor of what local media calls a â€œBurqa ban.â€Â France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Austria have all imposed similar restrictions in recent years with politicians citing oppression of women as one of the main reasons.
â€œOppression of women is extremely illiberal,â€Â Jan E. JÃ¸rgensen of the Danish Left partyÂ told public broadcaster DR. â€œOn the other hand, itâ€™s also extremely illiberal to tell people what they can and canâ€™t wear.â€
Jakob Ellemann-Jensen of Denmarkâ€™s center-right government said the ban was not particularly aimed at religions clothing.
â€œThis is not a ban on religious clothing, this is a ban on masking,â€Â Ellemann-JensenÂ told reporters.
Austriaâ€™s burqa ban took effect Sunday as part ofÂ a number of â€œintegration lawsâ€Â passed in May. The government said the laws are meant to teach immigrants â€œacceptance and respect of Austrian values.â€Â (RELATED: Laws To Force â€˜Acceptance And Respect Of Austrian Valuesâ€™ Take Effect)
â€œAcceptance and respect of Austrian values are basic conditions forÂ successful cohabitation between the majority Austrian population and peopleÂ from third countries living in Austria,â€ theÂ government saidÂ after passing the law.
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