China bans burqa in Muslim region of Xinjiang

Published: January 13, 2015
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PHOTO: AFP

PHOTO: AFP

Residents in Urumqi have been banned from wearing the burqa in an effort to curb increasing terrorism.

According to The Telegraph, women in the city of 3.1 million people in the far western region of Xinjiang, will no longer be allowed to wear the garment, state media announced this week.

“Burqas are not traditional dress for Uighur women, and wearing them in public places is banned in countries such as Belgium and France,” Xinhua, China’s official news agency wrote regarding the ban.

Xinjiang is home to the Uighurs, a largely Muslim group and per the 2010 census, around 13.4 million of its nearly 22 million residents are Muslims.

Earlier, Xinjiang banned the wearing of face veils in public, a move experts worried could spark more unrest in the troubled region.

The restriction came as China stepped up curbs on religious clothing amid increasing nervousness about extremism. Beijing blames separatists for several deadly bomb and knife attacks that have killed hundreds of people over the past two years or so.

Many Xinjiang experts said the outlawing of veils and the heavy-handed enforcement of the rules would further stigmatise the region’s minority Uighurs.

Uighurs have traditionally followed a moderate form of religion, but many have begun adopting practices such as full-face veils for women, as China has intensified a security crackdown in recent years.

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Reader Comments (15)

  • JSM
    Jan 13, 2015 - 7:19PM

    What is a Pakistani’s stand on this?

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  • khan
    Jan 13, 2015 - 7:41PM

    Now what do mullas have to say about it? I know they wont say anything.

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  • Heera
    Jan 13, 2015 - 11:07PM

    Oppression of Muslims continues in China, and no one seems to be bothered about it. Everyone is interested in Chinese money and cheap goods that they have given up on their muslims brothers. Can’t we talk to China about it? We can use our friendship to improve quality of life for our Muslims brothers.

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  • Yumna Arif
    Jan 13, 2015 - 11:30PM

    Shouldn’t they ban monk robes too? What happened to religious freedom?

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  • Karachi Wally
    Jan 14, 2015 - 1:17AM

    China is a sovereign country and can do whatever they think is best for them. If I can’t live without observing burqa then I will stay away from going to China. Same goes for France and Europe, every country should be free to follow their rules. Its high time that we learn to respect laws and rules of other countries and not enforce our practices everywhere.

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  • irfansheikh
    Jan 14, 2015 - 3:05AM

    When in Rome, do as the Romans do ‘ If someone wants to stay in China they have to follow their rules just like Islamic nations have their own set of rules. Nothing wrong in it

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  • Sham
    Jan 14, 2015 - 7:03AM

    @Yumna Arif:
    How about giving freedom to your minorities instead of asking for everything all the time??

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  • Kumar
    Jan 14, 2015 - 7:24AM

    Dear Pakistanis, please hold at least ONE rally against the banning of burqa in China. PLEASE!

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  • Anon
    Jan 14, 2015 - 8:58AM

    India is behind this……..

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  • Wollstonecraft
    Jan 14, 2015 - 9:50AM

    Try going for a walk in Saudi Arabia wearing a pair of shorts or a skirt. You know very well where you will end up.

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  • PrasadDeccani
    Jan 14, 2015 - 10:00AM

    @irfansheikh:
    These people are Chinese, not foreigners to China. They follow Islam.

    So, they are in Rome and they are trying to be Romans of their kind. Their country (China) says a big NO NO.

    What to do now?

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  • Supriya
    Jan 14, 2015 - 10:58AM

    @Karachi Wally:
    i agree with you, although i don’t support some hard and fast rules in china, but then who am i to disagree with their policy.

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  • Andaleeb
    Jan 14, 2015 - 1:30PM

    Burqa is very useful for women like me. I take my burqa off only for my husband. The poor man wishes that I leave it on since I am not very pretty to look at.

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  • Mr. Rationale
    Jan 15, 2015 - 8:21PM

    Burqa is not a part of Islam. It is part of Arab culture and we don’t need their stone age culture. In our culture, if you bother to look back at 60s Pakistan, women of our country used to only wear dupatta around their necks or no dupatta at all.
    Burqa is just another wonder of wahabism just like terrorism and it must also be banned in Pakistan. Good going China!

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  • Fuzzy
    Jan 19, 2015 - 3:13PM

    that’s good the burqa has nothing to do with islam

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