Brussels: Judge rules niqab fine illegal
The Brussels suburb of Etterbeek may not fine people for wearing a niqab (NL) in public, according to a decision by a magistrate.
Mayor Vincent De Wolf says the magistrate said the regulation was disproportional compared with the goal of public safety. The municipality will consider whether to appeal the sentence.
Last spring the local police twice fined a woman who walked to the Islamic school past the Etterbeek municipality. The woman refused to pay the administrative fine. After the second time she was called to the Brussels magistrate court.
The mayor did not wish to comment on the court's decision. The municipality formally opposes wearing a burka in public since they say it conflicts with public safety and the respect for equality between men and women.