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Turkey to permit religious headscarves

March 9, 2013 at 5:23 PM

ANKARA, Turkey, March 9 (UPI) -- Turkey's labor minister said he will work to remove a ban on women's religious headscarves in government buildings.

Faruk Celik said he received a petition with 12.3 million signatures demanding the headscarf ban be lifted and calling for Muslim women -- many of whom believe the scarves to be a religious commandment -- to be free to dress as they please, Hurriyet Daily News said Saturday.

"I am convinced that this process will lead to enhanced social peace and harmony -- and will be a key ingredient for the normalization process," Celik said.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has agreed, noting no such ban on headscarves exists in the nation's constitution.

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