The Government will ban face-covering garments in school

Niqab face-covering Oslo NorwayWoman dressed in nikab in downtown Oslo. Photo: Lise Åserud / NTB

The Government will ban face-covering garments in school

The Government will ban the use of face-covering garments in all Norwegian educational institutions.


The bill was presented by the Minister of Knowledge Torbjørn Røe Isaksen (H) and acting Minister for Integration and Immigration Per Sandberg (Frp) Monday morning.

The national ban will apply at all levels and throughout the course of education, kindergarten and school and all the way to universities and colleges. The goal is greater openness and communication. According to Isaksen, the education system is a special arena where it is extra that important students and teachers can see each other’s face.

– We do not want face-covering garments in kindergartens, schools or universities. The garments prevent good communication that is essential for pupils and students to be able to learn properly, says Torbjørn Røe Isaksen.

Local prohibition

He says such a ban is an unusual regulation in Norway. And that it is not customary to regulate people’s clothes. As there is already legal to have local prohibitions, the Government believes this should be rooted in national law.

The bill will be sent on Monday. In addition to applying to all educational institutions, it shall also apply to introductory programs for refugees and Norwegian education for newly arrived immigrants. It will apply to both students and employees.

– The bill ensures equal rules and equal treatment in the whole of Norway, says Røe Isaksen.

Facts about Niqab, from wikipedia

niqab sysria

Woman in Syria wearing niqab. By Bernard Gagnon – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

A niqab or niqāb (/nɪˈkɑːb/; Arabic: نِقاب‎‎ niqāb , “veil” also called a ruband) is a cloth that covers the face as a part of sartorial hijab. It is worn by some Muslim women in public areas and in front of non-mahram men, especially in the Hanbali Muslim faith tradition. The niqab is worn in the Arab countries of the Arabian Peninsula such as Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.

It is also worn in Somalia, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh as well as some parts of the Palestinian territories, Southern Iran and other areas with sizeable Muslim populations. Because of the wide variety of hijab worn in the Muslim world, it can be difficult to definitively distinguish between one type of veil and another.

The terms niqab and burqa are often incorrectly used interchangeably; a niqab covers the face (but not the eyes) while a burqa covers the whole body from the top of the head to the ground, with a cloth grille in the hood to allow the wearer to see in front of her.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today