Thursday, October 23, 2014

Paris Opera House Bans Wearing of Niqab

France's 2010 ban on wearing of the full-face veil (niqab) in public places gained new attention this month when on Oct. 3 a tourist from the Gulf States and her male companion who had purchased the most expensive seats for the opera La Traviata at Opera Bastille were ejected before the second act. They were seated directly behind the conductor.  According to an RT report this week, some of the performers said they would not continue before a faceless audience member. They claimed the woman's clothing was distracting. The couple left without trying to obtain a refund of the almost $600 they had paid for their tickets.  A day later, the Opera issued new rules in an internal memo. As subsequently reported by RT, anyone whose face is covered with a veil, mask or hood, so that only their eyes are visible, will be ejected. A hijab that only covers the hair is permitted.