Turkey’s main opposition set to introduce bill for Islamic headscarves

Turkey’s main opposition set to introduce bill for Islamic headscarves
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CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu said they will legally secure the right of women’s wearing headscarves in Turkey

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) said his party will introduce a bill to the parliament for securing the right of wearing headscarves in public institutions. 

“We are taking the women's clothing out of the monopoly of politics. We will legally secure this right. We will completely remove the issue from being a topic of discussion,” Kilicdaroglu said in a video he posted on social media on Monday.

Women wearing Islamic headscarves have long been a matter of debate in modern Turkey. The headscarves were banned in public institutions, schools and universities, under a “Public Dress Cod” enacted after 1980 coup d'etat. The practice remained in effect during the succeeding secularist administrations, until Islamic President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) dismantled the ban in 2013 as part of a reforms package. CHP was among the bloc strongly opposing the use of Islamic headscarves in public and educational institutions.

“Turkey has many open wounds and they keep us captive to the past, which one of them is the headscarf issue,” Kilicdaroglu said. 

“CHP has made mistakes over the issue in the past. But we knew how to change and learn. Now it's time to move on to the next step. It's time to get over this issue as a society and leave it behind. It's time to settle the matter with the seriousness of the state,” he said.

CHP leader said they have created a legal framework in harmony with the principles of universal law.