Belgian politicians back veil ban

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A Belgian parliamentary committee has voted to impose a nationwide ban on wearing face-covering veils in public.The country’s home affairs committee agreed unanimously to support the move, which must be approved by parliament to become law. The ban includes any clothes or veils that do not allow the wearer to be fully identified, including the full-face niqab and burqa. If passed, the measure would be the first clampdown of its kind in Europe.


Housewife poet unveils the truth
A Saudi housewife who wears a niqab while delivering poetry denouncing attitudes to women in her country is poised to win the Middle East’s equivalent of Australian Idol. Million’s Poet marries modern life to a 1000-year-old tradition, with prizemoney of almost $1.6 million offered to writers of Bedouin verse. Hissa Hilal has become a heroine to many across the Arab-speaking world for her stance, made all the more dramatic for being delivered from beneath a niqab – the all-black face-veil worn by ultra-traditional Arab women.