September 20, 2021

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Secularism | The wearing of the Islamic veil provokes political debate in Belgium

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Ishan Howach, 36, resigned Friday from the Institute for the Equality of Women and Men (IEFH), where he served as government commissioner to ensure compliance with the law and the public interest.

To justify her decision, the woman was involved in the fight against sexual discrimination, especially at work, saying she wanted to “protect herself from cyber stockings”. He regretted that he had been the target of “relentless personal attacks” since revealing his appointment to the post six weeks ago.

Can a hidden woman use an office of public authority and represent a state that must adhere to the principle of neutrality in its relationship to worship? The question is even divided within the government coalition led by Alexander de Crowe.

The Prime Minister first defended the graduate’s “concrete CV”.

Distinctive religious signs

The Flemish Liberal also noted that the federal government prohibits any civil servant from “in contact with the public” by wearing any distinctive religious identity.Me Howach at IEFH.

But the appointment was fiercely contested by the Colo-Kron party and its foreign secretary, Sarah Schlitz, in the opposition, as well as in coalition formation and the reform movement (MR, Liberal Francophone).

The controversy intensified on July 3 with comments made in the newspaper Evening From Brussels Ishen Howch wrote that four days later he was considered “bad”.

In the interview, the daughter of this Moroccan ambassador considered the ban on wearing religious symbols in Belgium “discriminatory”.

“Not a debate: Are we questioning the separation of controversy and the state? How can this be denied with population change?” He added.

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Contacts with the Muslim Brotherhood?

Mr. Many saw this as a question of the neutrality of the state, described by De Crowe as a “fundamental principle.”Me During a heated question-and-answer session in the House on Thursday.

M. De Crew and MMe Belgian Civil Intelligence – State Security – Mr. They had to explain themselves before a parliamentary committee on Monday on a note that provoked “suspicions” of inter-communications.Me Hawach and the Islamic Brotherhood of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The person concerned was already strongly supportive on July 3, confirming that he did not know the movement was “near or far”. M. De Crew and MMe Schlitz declined to disclose the content of this note – “classified” and therefore confidential – and Mr. Withdrew any contact with the resignation.Me Howch.