S. Ouald Chaib
- Head-Covering Bans in Belgian Courtrooms and Beyond
- Headscarf Persecution and the Complicity of Supranational Courts
- Human Rights Quarterly
- Volume | Issue number
- 39 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Law (FdR)
- Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL)
The Islamic headscarf is banned in an increasing number of contexts in Belgium. According to the authors, this pattern can be characterized as “head-scarf persecution.” A topical example relates to access to courtrooms, which is evidenced by Lachiri v. Belgium, a case pending before the European Court of Human Rights. This article first reviews the interpretation of the ban on head-coverings in the courtroom. On the basis of a poll conducted among judges, their approach toward religious and non-religious head-coverings in courtrooms is discussed in practice. The matter is then considered within the broader Belgian social and legal context, and lastly analyzed in light of the case law of the European Courts.
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