While Western nations are quick to don Islamic headdress, the President of Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena, announced on Sunday a ban on face-coverings in public places.
“Any form of face cover that will hinder the identification of a person is banned under emergency regulations,” the press statement said.
The bill was promptly submitted through parliament via a private member’s motion and approved by President Sirisena following the Easter Sunday terrorist bombings which killed 250 people and injured another 500.
Several Sri Lankan news outlets reported that the President “took this decision to further support the ongoing security and help the armed forces to easily identify the identity of any wanted perpetrators.”
The Justice Ministry in the Sri Lankan parliament was already in discussions within the cabinet about the banning of the burqa but expedited the bill following the attacks.
Sri Lanka follows a host of other countries to either ban or place restrictions on wearing the burqa in public, including France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Chad, Cameroon, Niger, Congo-Brazzaville, Turkey, and Switzerland.