Legal and social issues concerning the wearing of the «burqa» and other head coverings in the United Kingdom
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This paper follows the formulaic template of the Religare Project and provides an overview of English law and its minimal engagement with the wearing of Islamic dress generally and the burqa in particular. It seeks to provide a cross section snapshot of the views of the Muslim community, but these must be treated with a degree of caution as the most vocal elements in print and broadcast media tend to be from the extremes. To the extent that it is possible to draw meaningful sociological conclusions from the anecdotal evidence, it is apparent that the United Kingdom's tradition of accommodation of different cultures over many centuries, not least in the last half-century from its former colonies in Asia and Africa, has created a higher degree of assimilation and accommodation than seems to be the case elsewhere in Europe.