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AKIPRESS.COM -Belgium’s ban on burqas and other full-face Islamic veils has been upheld by the European Court of Human Rights, The Independent reported.
Judges said the nationwide prohibition, which came into effect in 2011, did not violate the rights to private and family life and freedom of religion, or discrimination laws.
The court found Belgium had the right to impose restrictions aiming to ensure the principles of “living together” and the “protection of the rights and freedoms of others”.
Its ruling said the government had been responding “to a practice that it considered to be incompatible, in Belgian society, with social communication and more generally the establishment of human relations, which were indispensable for life in society…essential to ensure the functioning of a democratic society”.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) dismissed two separate cases – one appealing Belgium’s nationwide ban and another on a 2008 by-law adopted by three municipalities.
The first case was brought by two women – Samia Belcacemi and Yamina Oussar – who previously attempted to have the law suspended and annulled at the Constitutional Court in Brussels.