Sri Lanka moves to ban burqas and close more than 1,000 Islamic schools

Sri Lanka will ban the wearing of the burqa and shut more than 1,000 Islamic schools in the latest actions affecting the country’s minority Muslim population.

Minister for Public Security Sarath Weerasekera said he had signed a paper on Friday for cabinet approval to ban the full-face covering worn by some Muslim women on “national security” grounds.

“In our early days Muslim women and girls never wore the burqa,” he said.

“It is a sign of religious extremism that came about recently.

“We are definitely going to ban it.”

The wearing of the burqa in the majority-Buddhist nation has been temporarily banned before.

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