A Muslim woman was forced to remove her veil today as the ban on full-face veils came into force in Austria. Items concealing the face in public places, such as the full
Islamic veil, medical masks and scarves to cover faces have been outlawed. Only under certain conditions, such as ‘at cultural events’, will people be able to wear
them in public. The laws are aimed at ‘ensuring the cohesion of society in an open
society’ and anyone violating the rules could be hit with a €150 fine. On Sunday, a Muslim woman defying the rule was spotted being told to remove her veil in the town
of Zell am See. In a ruling announcing the ban, officials in Vienna said: ‘Acceptance and respect of Austrian values are basic conditions for successful cohabitation
between the majority Austrian population and people from third countries living in
Austria.’ The measures, similar to those in other European Union countries, also
apply to visitors even though large numbers of Arab tourists holiday in the Alpine country.