Women wearing the Burqa or Niqab could now face two weeks’ jail or a $1,500 fine if they refuse to show their faces in court when asked by a judge in Australia. A proposed law to ban women from wearing burqas and jail people being disruptive in courts has been slammed by the Labor Government.
The fines could be handed out to witnesses or members of the public for refusing to stand, yelling or protesting in court. This includes Muslim women wearing a burqa or niqab. The law would have to be passed by the government but Opposition Leader Mathew Guy said their was a growing disrespect for authority in the court room. However Attorney general Martin Pakula has indicated the Andrews Government will oppose the laws if it is introduced into the Victorian Parliament.
“I think it is just opportunism. It suggests all he (Mr Guy) is interested in is hopping into bed with One Nation and trying to extract a few votes from the far right,’’ he said.
“I have meetings with the head of jurisdiction, the head of DPP, police, all the time. I have never had one request for a law of this nature because the courts know that they have general contempt of court powers that if people have been disruptive, if people are being disrespectful.’’ report HeraldSun.
Whether it is bikie gang members, professional protest groups, or anyone else — no one is free to pick and choose what laws they wish to follow.’ New South Wales have already adopted similar laws after a witness wearing a veil refused to remove the headpiece when giving evidence.
Few months ago a judge has warned a Muslim woman after she refused to stand when the judicial officer entered the courtroom because ‘she won’t stand for anyone except Allah’. Moutia Elzahed – the second wife of Hamdi Alqudsi who was convicted for recruiting for Islamic State in Syria – once again appeared at the Sydney District Court on Wednesday for a civil matter. Ms Elzahed, Alqudsi and her two teenage sons are suing the Commonwealth of Australia and New South Wales for assault and battery during the 2014 counter-terrorism raids.
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