Denmark: Conservative Party proposes burka ban

Denmark: Conservative Party proposes burka ban

A ban on burkas is part of a series of integration initiatives adopted by the Conservative Party.    Another such initiative is to integrate democracy and Danish values into the curriculum of private schools. 

In an interview with Danish newspaper Politiken Lene Espersen, the head of the Conservative People's Party and the current Trade and Economy Minister, said that the greatest threat against Denmark and Danish values comes from militant Muslim extremism.  Espersen said that immigrants can go to work and earn a living yet still live in a parallel society where they see Arab and Pakistani TV at home and have no connection to Danish society.  She says they will reach out to those who see the wisdom in the Danish social model, and that they intend to offer a carrot and not only a stick.

The Danish People Party and the opposition Social Democrats support the proposal to ban burkas.  The Coalition partner Liberal Party, however, rejects such legislation.


The junior minority coalition Conservative Party wants to introduce a ban on Muslim burka or niqab dress codes which require women to completely cover their faces in the public space, according to Jyllands-Posten.

"We don't want to see burkas in Denmark. We simply can't accept that some of our citizens walk around with their faces covered," says MP Naser Khader, a Syrian-Palestinian of extraction and the Conservative Party's recently-appointed integration spokesman.

Khader says the burka is un-Danish and oppressive towards women and should be completely banned, although he and his party say that what people do in their own homes is their business, but as soon as they walk into the public domain, one should be able to see their faces.

The Danish People's Party and the Social Democratic Party have welcomed the proposal, while the senior coalition Liberal Party rejects the idea of legislating about citizens' clothing as long as they are not in a public function.


Source: Politiken, Copenhagen Post (English), Ekstra Bladet (Danish)

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