December 9th, 2010
The new Civic Ordinance prohibiting the wearing of the burqa and the niqab in buildings and municipal facilities enters into force in Lleida. The offenders face fines of up to 600 euros.
The socialist mayor claims to be proud that “Lleida is the first city in Spain that regulates clearly an element of discrimination against women”. Members of the city’s Muslim community are concerned with this violation of basic rights and discrimination on religious grounds (the Muslim Cultural Association Watani has presented a claim to the Catalonia Superior Court of Justice demanding the provisional suspension of the Ordinance but it has not succeeded), while others claim that, as few women wear full veil, the lack of mosques is instead a major concern, as the only mosque in the city exceeds its capacity.