Ombudsman: Burqas Ban Should Be about Discrimination, Not National Security

Novinite Insider » OPINIONS | May 11, 2016, Wednesday // 12:02| Views: | Comments: 14
Bulgaria: Ombudsman: Burqas Ban Should Be about Discrimination, Not National Security File photo, BGNES

Bulgaria's National Ombudsman Maya Manolova has warned that restrictions to wearing full-
face veils, introduced on some cities, should not be justified with national security as they are unlikely to address the issue.

The right to covering most of one's face and body, however, clashes with non-discrimination and gender equality principles despite the fact that religious garments are part of the European Convention on Human Rights.

A blanket ban on wearing face-covering veils, colloquially known as "the burqa ban", has been adopted in several places such as Pazardzhik and Stara Zagora, with nationalist VMRO party putting forward a proposal for Sofia. National security arguments arguments were given after the idea was initially endorsed by Bulgaria's Chief Prosecutor, Sotir Tsatsarov, who suggested the restriction should be implemented nationwide.

Manolova, however, said removing feels from public spaces would not address any problem. "Terrorists need not wear beards. We saw what happens - normally they are dressed according to present standards, with shorts and a backpack."

Manolova also calls into question the side effects of the ban if it is adopted at a local level.

"If for example in the town of Kaspichan burqas are forbidden and if they are not in Vidin, if someone is traveling from Vidin to Kaspichan should changes clothes in Kaspichan. Maybe there should be a new road sign: "No Burqas"."

A bill was tabled in April by one of the parties of nationalist Patriotic Front coalition.


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Tags: burqas, face-covering veils, veils, Maya Manolova, VMRO, Pazardzhik, Plovdiv, Sotir Tsatsarov
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» To the forumComments (14)
Jerry - 22 Jun 2016 // 23:31:22

Freedom of Religion in Bulgaria exist but has become selective and political as we have seen with the veil attitude.

The Laws in Bulgaria has become an Elitist canon to be pointed on the weak.

Bulgaria follows the herds in Europe and not its tradition of Freedom of Religion.

Warfou - 22 Jun 2016 // 11:17:29

Wearing burqas in public is not only a sign of women's submission, but also obvious demonstration and intolerable propaganda of religious practices. It infringes upon the other people's right to religious freedom.

Jerry - 21 Jun 2016 // 01:36:51

Between the actual sex act and the orgasmic skin covering and a veil, I bet it is all great under the covers and not wide open.

We should study what is the importance of UNDER THE COVERS.

BULERICAN - 18 Jun 2016 // 20:26:38

I was under the impession that "coitus" is the actual sexual act. How the hell you can remove that is beyond me. Apparently he speaks of the "clitoris" which of course has nothing to do with a burqa.

Fr Jack Hackett - 18 Jun 2016 // 17:58:38

I would imagine there is a vast difference between cutting pieces off a womans body and insisting that she leave her face uncovered
It is extremely worrying that there are people see no difference between these two

Jerry - 18 Jun 2016 // 00:43:12


What is the difference of taking the veil away and the African custom of removing the female coitus?

Fr Jack Hackett - 25 May 2016 // 11:09:40

In truth, they cannot think for themselves because they are not allowed to. They are told that an uncovered woman is nothing more than a hoar so that is what they believe. They do not need to control themselves because they are told it is the fault of the woman (or child) if she is raped. The problem now in the EU, is that there are a number of our leaders who are putting forward the same suggestion

Seedy - 24 May 2016 // 13:01:41

Really, Fr JH? Are you sure it isn't simply because they are a bunch of ignorant savages who believe in nonsensical fairy-tales and haven't progressed intellectually or socially since the Stone Age?

Fr Jack Hackett - 23 May 2016 // 17:05:16

The veil is necessary in muslim countries or where there are large numbers of muslim men because the men cannot control themselves if they see a lock of hair on a womans head or an uncovered wrist.

Rurik - 22 May 2016 // 12:38:18

"You have to understand"?------If You turn to me, Jerry, then more or less neutral "We" ( or, say, "I";) would be far more appropriate than the amusingly mentorial "You". No? ;)

Jerry - 21 May 2016 // 17:17:11

You have to understand the West is more liberal to open sex as seen in the streets of Bulgaria and Europe, while the veil is a symbol of woman inhibitions.

Rurik - 21 May 2016 // 14:25:53

“The issue of the burka is not a religious issue. It is a question of freedom and of women’s dignity; the burka is not a religious sign, it is a sign of the subjugation, of the submission of women. The burka is not welcome in France."
/Nicolas Sarkozy/

Jerry - 21 May 2016 // 00:22:15

Maya you make me proud of your judicial acumen and you make me proud to be a Lawyer.

I would love to have dinner with you on my next visit to Sofia.

Fr Jack Hackett - 12 May 2016 // 17:24:48

Since the burqa is not a form of religious dress but a cultural one it is nothing to do with EU human rights legislation. I am surprised that people instrucing lawyers are not aware of legalities such as this

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