style="border-color:#;" >
style="background:#;" >
Scegli il colore

Burkinis also raise controversy in Italy

Burkinis also raise controversy in Italy
Burkini (Afp) 

(AGI) Rome, Aug. 17 - A controversy has exploded over the ban of burkinis, the full-length swimsuit worn by Muslim women at the beach, following French Prime Minister Manuel Valls's comments supporting the mayors who have issued ordnances banning burkinis from French beaches. Also Italian policy-makers are divided in arguing in favour and against the possibility of passing stricter laws imposing standard swimwear on all women, or to put it simply, laws forbidding the use of clothes that make it impossible to identify a person in public places. Italian Interior Minister, Angelino Alfano, clarified: "Our proposals, albeit strict, must never turn into a provocation potentially capable of attracting acts of terrorism." It is not the first time that Italy tackles the issue and that policy-makers, depending on their affiliation, attempt to regulate the matter in a more or less restrictive way. Past parliaments have attempted to regulate the issue twice in the past and both attempts failed: the first was promoted by the center-right in 2009, during Berlusconi's last government, and aimed at prohibiting by law the use of the burqa, niqab or any type of veil covering the face of women. The other bill was proposed by a left-wing party: in 2010, 15 MPs of the Democratic Party (PD) signed a bill on the freedom of using clothing items covering the face, if worn for religious reasons. Italy already has a law regulating the use of certain 'clothing items' or 'accessories' in public: Law No. 152 of 22 May 1975 named "Provisions to keep public order" and better known as the Reale Law. Article 5 of the Law states: "It is forbidden to take part in public events, taking place in a public place or in a space open to the public, wearing protective helmets or having one's face entirely or partly covered by any means apt to make it difficult to identify the person. Offenders will be punished by being put into custody from one to six months and with a fine from 50,000 to 200,000 Lire." This article was later amended by Art. 2 of Law No. 533 of 8 August 1977 ("Provisions on matters of public order"), which bans the use of "any other means apt to making it difficult to identify the person, in a public place or in a space open to the public, without a reason to justify it." Offenders would be punished by being put into custody from six to twelve months and subjected to an administrative fine. Therefore, for the time being, in Italy there is no specific ban on the use burkinis, burqas or niqabs. The only exception is the regulation that was put into effect in Lombardy on Jan. 1, 2016, which modifies the rules regulating access to regional offices and sets a ban on anybody entering a regional office or hospital in Lombardy wearing a burqa or a niqab or any other Muslim women's traditional outfits. As for other proposals put forth before the Parliament, the Chamber of Deputies' first Commission is scrutinising the bill named "Measures to prevent jihadist radicalisation and extremism", which however does not consider clothing items or possible bans. (AGI)