Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


European rights court upholds French burqa ban

01 July 2014, 21:47

Strasbourg - The European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday upheld France's controversial burqa ban, rejecting arguments that outlawing full-face veils breaches religious freedom.

In a case brought by a 24-year-old French woman with the support of a British legal team, the court ruled that France was justified in introducing the ban in the interests of social cohesion.

"The Court emphasised that respect for the conditions of 'living together' was a legitimate aim for the measure at issue," a statement from the court said.

The court also emphasised that states should be allowed a degree of discretion - "a wide margin of appreciation" - on a policy issue which is subject to significant difference of opinion.

Unveiling in public 'degrading'

Two of the 17 judges who spent several months deliberating on the case dissented from the majority view that the ban did not breach the European Convention on Human Rights' provisions protecting the freedom of thought, conscience and religion.

The judges agreed unanimously that the woman had not been a victim of discrimination. She had not been prosecuted under the law, which has resulted in only a handful of arrests since it was introduced in 2010.

The university graduate, who has family in Birmingham, England, had requested anonymity for fear of reprisals in France over her action. She had argued that being obliged to take off her veil in public was degrading.

In written evidence, she had testified that she wore the full veil of her own free will and was willing to remove it whenever required for security reasons - addressing the two main arguments put forward by French authorities in support of the ban.

Under the ban, women wearing full-face veils in public spaces can be fined up to 150 euros. 

Belgium and some parts of Switzerland have followed France's lead and similar bans are being considered in Italy and The Netherlands.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Cyril Mike Odhiz
Kenyans furious on young lady aft...

A young Kenyan woman is the talk of town after she posted a photo with her elderly lover after a round of steamy sex, or so the photo suggested.  Read more...

Submitted by
Kiplangat langat
Uhuru could be a one term Presid...

Bomet governor Isaac Ruto has said that President Uhuru Kenyatta could be a one term President if he fails to increase allocations to the counties. Read more...

Submitted by
Mody Sammy
35 year old farmer a new milliona...

A 35 year old farmer from Mpeketoni Lamu county has become the latest millionaire in town as she became winner in the ongoing ‘Shinda Mamili na Story Ibambe’. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Leave your past relationship bagg...

Leave your past relationship baggage at the door when you start a new relationship. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Advice from a young married Kenya...

I was just going to get water in the office kitchen and thought a simple hi was fine until I ended up in an hour long conversation with someone. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Helping you find the type of man ...

To put it simply, you can’t go looking for fish in a meat market; you have to go to a fish market. Read more...