Germany/Austria : Calls for school headscarf ban

Germany/Austria : Calls for school headscarf ban

In a related story, Pro NRW intends to call for a EU-wide referendum on minarets.


Vorarlberg Freedom Party (FPÖ) leader Dieter Egger today (Mon) called for a ban on head-scarves in all provincial schools and public institutions.

He claimed the federal education ministry’s exemption of Muslim girls from a ban on any kind of head-covering at schools had discriminated against non-Muslims.

Egger said: "Discrimination against our children in favour of Muslims should not be tolerated." He called head scarves signs of a rejection of integration in Austria.

He said: "We are demanding a general ban on head scarves at schools and public institutions."

"Unfortunately, head scarves are being misused under cover of the principle of religious freedom and perceived more and more by our people as a signal for the transformation of Austria into an Islamic country," he added.

A ban on head scarves, he said, was necessary "to avoid conflicts that are on the horizon."



Two months after being fired from the board of the Bundesbank, Thilo Sarazzin started a new debate in Berlin, calling for a ban on headscarves in school.

He says he would ban headscarves in class, since they're not a religious symbol but rather a political one. A symbol of the subjugation of women by men.

Students are allowed to wear headscarves in Berlin schools. In 2005 Berlin adopted a neutrality law, which bans teachers, judges and police agents from wearing any religious symbol.

Sarazzin says that there is a growing number of Muslims in Europe, which is a problem everywhere.

In order to promote integration Sarazzin says that immigration should be limited and that those who are already here should be pressured to integrate. He also suggests that only German be spoken in school.

Heinz Buschkowsky (SPD), the mayor of Neukölln, supports Sarrazin and says that he's a big fan of school uniforms, which will take the headscarf issue off the table.

Badr Mohammed, of the Islamic Conference, says that Sarazzin is a dangerous preacher from the Christian side. He calls on Chancellor Angela Merkel to end this culture war as quickly as possible. Günter Piening, the Berlin Integration Commisioner say that both Sarrazin and Buschkowsky are constantly adding fuel to the fire and adding to the anti-Islamic sentiments.

An headscarf ban is not an issue for the Berlin SPD. Christian Gaebler says that the proposal is not new, original, realistic or constitutional.

Sources: Austrian Times (English), BILD, Berliner Morgenpost (German)

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