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Ingushetia children's ombudswoman backs Supreme Court's hijab ban

July 10, 2013, 17:20 UTC+3

Commenting on the hijab problems, Sultygova noted that they are trying to use it for political purposes

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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Uzakov

NAZRAN, July 10 (Itar-Tass) - Ingushetia children’s ombudswoman Marifa Sultygova supported the ruling by the Russian Supreme Court which upheld the Stavropol Territory authorities' decision to ban hijabs /Muslim headscarves/ in local schools.

"You can hardly disagree with the court's decision which upheld the resolution by the Stavropol Territory government to ban appearance in schools in hijabs," Sultygova told Itar-Tass.

"If a school which a child attends has requirements for uniforms, you have to stick to the norms," said the children’s ombudswoman, a former teacher.

Commenting on the hijab problems, Sultygova noted that they are trying to use it for political purposes. "We haven't thought it over at all, have not prepared properly before beginning to teach the basic of religion in schools and now we say that you cannot live by these laws; that the church is separated from the state in this country," she added.

The problem came into the public focus last autumn, when the regional Muslim department reported that five pupils wearing hijabs were not allowed to attend lessons in the Neftekumsk district from October 3 through October 17.

Stavropol region's children rights ombudswoman Svetlana Adamenko who was questioned by the court of original jurisdiction said "the parents who came to the court have no reasons to believe that they are discriminated against."

In a number of cases, it is parents who make children wear religious clothes. "The parents who do not understand it; they create prerequisites for such negative consequences which they themselves cannot foresee. It is explained by the fact that the school environment is quite aggressive, and many children may resent hijabs," Adamenko explained.

The local authorities' resolution banning hijabs in schools has been in force since January 9, 2013.

The key requirements for school uniform ban bright colors, low waistline trousers and skirts, high skirt slits, and the clothing that hides face as well as religious clothes. Large accessories, such as symbols of informal organizations and piercing are prohibited. Schoolgirls may wear classic trousers and pullovers in gold season.

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