Conservative leader Cory Bernardi has renewed his push for a burqa ban, calling for wearing of the head covering to be forbidden at airports, citizenship ceremonies and Centrelink officers under a bill introduced to parliament today.
Senator Benrardi also believes the burqa — which entirely covers a woman’s face — should be totally banned in the ACT and NT.
In 2014, Senator Bernardi called for the wearing of a burqa to be banned following anti-terrorism raids in Sydney and Brisbane, describing the head covering as a “shroud of oppression” and a “flag of fundamentalism”, adding they are “not right” in Australia.
Four years on, he has continued his campaign, saying that although he has no issue with head scarfs that cover a woman’s hair, a burqa is “a matter of identity security”.
“It is a direct challenge to our cultural norms and our societal expectations because Australians expect to see the face of the person they’re dealing with and it’s the cultural garb of Saudi Arabia and we’re not Saudi Arabia,” he said.
When asked in what way it posed a security risk, Senator Bernardi asked Sydney radio station 2GB, “What’s the point of having CCTV and photo ID and biometric security checks of you can’t see their face?”
He said if you’re at an airport, want a Centrelink payment or are swearing allegiance to Australia “you need to show your face”.
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