Germany's interior minister will back plans to ban the burka as part of a raft of anti-terror measures, local media say.Thomas de Maiziere also proposes deporting criminals more quickly and relaxing doctor confidentiality rules.
On Thursday, Mr de Maiziere is expected to announce the plans for speeding up the deportation process, making being a "threat to public security" grounds for deporting migrants, and relaxing doctors' confidentiality obligations.
Next week, he is expected to back a series of measures being considered by a grouping of German states' interior ministers from within his own Christian Democrat party and its Bavarian sister party.
He is due to announce some ideas on Thursday, and back some ideas from ministers in his party next week.
The ministers propose:
- banning the burka
- stopping German people from being allowed to hold dual nationality
- recruiting 15,000 more police officers by 2020
- posting more police on trains and in transport hubs
- making it more difficult for extremist organisations to finance mosques
- deporting foreign hate preachers
Mr de Maiziere says the terror threat to Germany is high. "We live in difficult times," he said on Wednesday.
The country has very few restrictions on people's dress. A committee of the government issued a report in 2012 saying it would be unconstitutional to ban the full burka or the niqab facial veil.
But there are some exceptions. For instance, it is illegal to cover your face in a football stadium in Germany.
Burka bans exist in other parts of Europe, notably France, Belgium and some towns in Italy.
It is sad to see Germany follow France's tail on this xenophobia.
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