In Defence Of Women’s Rights

8th October 1998

A special meeting of the Muslim Council of Britain, an umbrella body of Muslim organisations, deliberated on the issue of the forced imposition of secular dress code on Turkish female students and officials.

Present at the meeting, held in London, were members of most of the prominent Muslim organisations in Great Britain, who resolved to record their protest on this subject and affirmed their solidarity and support for the victims of this unfair and unjust imposition.

The MCB feels this is a denial of basic human rights to the women of Turkey who are entitled like anybody else to dress according to their personal beliefs. Such action sits ill with the government’s claim to being a part of Europe or of upholding human rights. This law is against the basic standard of decency and constitutes a violation of Turkish women’s dignity and human rights. It is especially extraordinary that such action should take place in a Muslim country and furthermore, in a country which for hundreds of years was at the centre of the Islamic world.

The MCB joins with the vast majority of the Turkish people in urging the Turkish Government to immediately rescind the unfair and unjust imposition of this draconian law. It fully supports the protest taking place on Sunday the 11th of October when 3 million Turks will form a human chain stretching over 2,500km to protest at yet another attack on their Islamic identity.