Sri Lanka has decided to ban donning burqa and shut over 1,000 Islamic schools, the latest actions affecting the country’s minority Muslim population.
Minister for Public Security Sarath Weerasekera at a news conference on Saturday, said that he had signed a paper on Friday, for cabinet approval to ban the burqa 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.”
Burqa, in the majority-Buddhist nation, was temporarily banned in 2019 after the bombing of churches and hotels by armed fighters that killed more than 250.
Weerasekera said the government is planning to ban more than 1,000 Islamic schools in the country that he said were flouting national education policy. “Nobody can open a school and teach whatever you want to the children,” he said.