Italian college bans Muslim headscarves

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The college in Udine has banned Muslim students from wearing headscarves. Muslim headscarf photo: Shutterstock
07:11 CET+01:00
The headmaster of a college in Italy's Friuli-Venezia Giulia region has banned female Muslim students from wearing headscarves.

The move is intended to prevent further racial violence after several attacks against Muslim students at Malignini di Cervignano, a technical college in the province of Udine, Messaggero Veneto reported.

In one recent incident, an Egyptian student was hospitalized for seven days because of injuries sustained in an attack by an Italian friend following a row in class.                                      

In a circular issued last week, headmaster Aldo Duri said the college, which has a sizeable number of students of Arab origin, must promote values of "tolerance, respect and equality" and that "outward signs of religion can be seen as provocation".

"For example, the handkerchief or scarf that covers the hair and sometimes part of the face of Muslim girls. They are free to use it outside school, but not in class," he wrote, adding that the school is secular and any outward sign of any religion would not be tolerated.

The ban will take effect in all of the college's six sites across the area.

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He also said he was concerned that further violence could be inspired by recent attacks by Islamic extremists in Europe.

"Friction and insults that were fairly innocent between the Islamic community and the natives are now loaded with new meaning," he was quoted by Trieste Prima as saying.

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