“German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been under fire in Germany for allowing hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees into the country — and, according to her critics, letting them bring in a fundamentalist strain of Islam at odds with her country’s secular foundations.
Her response? Taking a page from the playbook of neighboring France and calling for a ban on full-face veils, or burqas, in Germany. The covering, she declared to applause at a convention for her center-right Christian Democratic Union party, is “not acceptable in Germany.”
“It should be banned, wherever it is legally possible,” she added.
The rule would prohibit Muslim women from donning full-face coverings in schools, court rooms, and administrative buildings, according to the Washington Post. It would also make it an offense to wear one while driving or participating in a demonstration.
Merkel suggested that the measure was meant to protect German culture, saying that Germans “show our face in interpersonal communication.”
In her remarks to the party conference, Merkel also pledged to prevent another massive influx of refugees into Germany. “A situation like the one in the late summer of 2015 cannot, should not, and must not be repeated,” she vowed.”