Muslim women don’t have to wear veils: Queen Rania

Islam does not require women to wear veils, Queen Rania al-Abdullah of Jordan has said in an interview, calling on Muslim moderates to “make their voices be heard.” “Islam neither requires one to be practising, nor to dress in one way or another,” the stylish 36-year-old queen told the Italian daily Corriere della Sera during a visit to Rome on Friday. “So imposing the veil on a woman is contrary to the principles of Islam,” said Queen Rania, who is in Rome for the launch of a Group of Seven (G7) programme to develop vaccines against diseases that are endemic in poor countries. “Unfortunately, after all the suspicion weighing on Islam, many people have begun to consider the veil as a political problem, but this is not the case,” she told Corriere. “Wearing the veil is a free personal choice.” Queen Rania urged “all moderates to stand up and let their voices be heard.” She added: “Many people are frustrated in the Arab world. Many give in to the anger because they are accused of violence. But instead we should get up, explain who we are and what we believe in. “Over the last three years, most victims of terrorism have been Muslim. So there’s not a war between Muslims and non-Muslims, but between extremists and moderates of all the religions,” the queen said. “What is important is not to live in fear. The most dangerous (thing to do) is to give up and lose hope. The main enemy is not terrorism or extremism, but ignorance,” she said.