In the News: Headscarves Banned at Turkish Universities

Turkey’s Constitutional Court has upheld a ban on wearing Muslim headscarves at the nation’s universities. The ruling is a setback for Turkey’s ruling party – the Islamic-oriented AK party – which supported a decision by parliament earlier this year to allow headscarves on the grounds that religious freedom is essential to keeping the country a secular state. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan says the ruling is an unfair denial of individual rights and religious liberty in a nation where two-thirds of women cover their heads. The Constitutional Court banned headscarves from universities in 1989, and it is still illegal for women in the public sector to wear them, but the regulation is often ignored.

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