Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is running for re-election after allowing millions of undocumented migrants from Muslim majority countries into Germany, announced last week that Germany would begin banning the burka.
Germany’s defense minister refused to wear a traditional head covering during her visit with a Saudi Arabian prince, arguing that women have as much right as men do to wear whatever they choose.
Ursula von der Leyen declined to wear a hijab — a veil traditionally worn by Muslim women — or an abaya, a full-length robe, when she met with Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman al Saud in the Saudi capital of Riyadh last Wednesday, according to Sputnik International news.
“The right to choose your own clothing is a right shared by men and women alike. It annoys me, when women are to be pushed into the Abaya,” Das Bild reported Leyen as saying.
According to reports, the woman pictured below, was arrested last week in Saudi Arabia for posting a picture of herself without a burka on social media:
— Muslim World Today (@MWTorg) December 14, 2016
When pictures of Leyen, minus a hijab, hit social media, some Saudis went on Twitter to blast her. NYP
This Egyptian Infantry and Air Force veteran applauds her decision to ditch the hijab:
— Belal E. (@irresistibleOne) December 14, 2016
“The German Defense Minister: not wearing the hijab in Saudi was deliberate. This is an insult to Saudi Arabia,” read one tweet.
“Political Correctness has been overridden”
The defense minister has admitted a complicity of politics in the crisis of confidence of democracy. To express oneself politically correctly is in itself no civilization achievement, says von der Leyen.
Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen (CDU) has shared a responsibility for the current crisis of confidence in democracy. The grand coalition had led to a “slowness of explanation” with less violent and lively debates, the deputy CDU chairman told the news magazine “Spiegel”. The crisis was also promoted by political correctness. “Yes, the political correctness has been overridden,” said von der Leyen, “the social pressure to respond homogeneously was too high.”
There is a difference between political correctness and civilizing achievements, “a limit below which people are simply insulted, oppressed, offended, or verbally discriminated against”. In the American election campaign, this limit was underscored clearly: “We are in a negotiating process, and I think it is worth fighting for what is actually a civilization achievement.” –Frankfurter Algemeine Politik
Leyen, decked out in a crisp dark pantsuit, said she “respects the customs and traditions of the country. [In Germany] one is free to choose his or her attire accordingly,” Sputnik reported.
The incident comes after German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently called for a ban on wearing burkas in her country.