Canada Tries to Ban Face Coverings in Citizenship Ceremonies


The Canadian government is trying to get around a court ruling that permits Muslim women immigrants from wearing face coverings in naturalization ceremonies.

The issue came up after new immigrant Zunera Ishaq said that she would not pledge her allegiance to Canada if she could not wear her niqab during the ceremony. An appeals court has already sided with Ishaq, though the government says it’s willing to go to the Supreme Court.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper claims that the niqab come from an “anti-woman” culture. Similarly, Defense Minister Jason Kenney has spoken against wearing face coverings during the ceremony: “At that one very public moment, of a very public declaration of one’s loyalty to one’s fellow citizens and country, one should do so openly, proudly and publicly, without one’s face hidden.”