Austria Passes ‘Burqa Ban’ Into Law
Austria passed a law that bans citizens from wearing full-face Islamic veils like the burqa and the niqab in public.
Violators will face fines when the legislation goes into effect in October of this year.
The law is apparently part of an “integration package” that was agreed upon by the coalition government. The new laws being put into place in Austria are part of an effort to integrate immigrants and on the whole.
The integration package will also prohibit the public distribution of the Quran after a radical Islamist group called “The True Religion” used the handing out of books as a front to recruit new members. The group was ultimately banned in Germany after being raided by police and accused of spreading hatred.
When the law comes into effect in October, the penalty for anyone caught wearing the burqa or niqab will be a fine of roughly 150 euros. Much of the anti-Islamisation aspects of the package were proposed and championed by the new leader of the conservative ÖVP and Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz.
The legislation also includes provisions for integrating asylum seekers, which will see migrants attend mandatory one-year courses in both German language and Western values.
Migrants will also be made to volunteer their time for unpaid charitable work, which is thought to help them integrate better into Austrian society.
The new law was passed despite the recent turmoil in the Austrian grand coalition due to the surprise resignation of former vice chancellor and former ÖVP leader Reinhold Mitterlehner.
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