Russian minister advocates school ban on Muslim head veils

Moscow, July 12, Interfax — Russia’s education and science minister has argued that it is unacceptable for girls to wear hijabs at Russian secular schools and supported a Supreme Court ruling on Wednesday that upheld a ban by the administration of the Stavropol territory on the wearing of hijabs at local schools.

«We believe that school pupils must be dressed in a secular way. Such is our position, which we have recorded and continue to adhere to. It has turned out that our position is similar to that of the Supreme Court,» Dmitry Livanov told the Ekho Moskvy (Echo of Moscow) radio station.

When asked whether school bans on hijabs are an affront to religious Muslims, Livanov said: «We are a secular state and our schools are secular schools. If they want to be educated at a state municipal institution they must comply with the rules.»

He said going to a private school that allows hijabs is an alternative. «We have religious educational organizations,» he said.

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