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Kazakh MP asked to ban Kazakh women from showing belly-buttons

09 september 2011, 14:31
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Bekbolat Tleukhan. Vesti.kz stock photo
Bekbolat Tleukhan. Vesti.kz stock photo
Here is a fragment of discussion between Majilis (lower chamber of Parliament) deputy Bekbolat Tleukhan and Chairman of Kazakhstan Agency for Religion Kairat Lama Sharif during presentation of the draft law On religious activities and religious institutions on September 8, reported by Tengrinews.kz.

“Why are we setting such strict constraints for our women, why are we forbidding them to wear hijab? This is their right. Let them wear it, for Allah’s sake,” the deputy told chairman of the Agency. “Why don’t you require them to cover their belly-buttons? You know very well that Kazakh women should not walk around like that, she has to observe public rules.” The issue of hijabs was raised by several other deputies. Lama Sharif replied that hijab is not Kazakh, but Arab clothes.

“Please tell us, where did kimishek (women’s head cover) come from? It did not come from Arab countries, we created it, our Kazkah people, as well as other parts of the national clothes. We did not copy anybody. Don’t we have other religions for criticizing apart from Islam? We have so many subjects for discussion, for example, sects?” deputy asked.

“As for kimishek, a head cover of Kazakh women, it has very old routs. I want you to understand one thing: wearing a head cover and wearing a hijab are two different things. We are not attacking Islam. I am a Muslim myslef and I will not allow any attacks on Islam. I just want to say that wearing hijab or other Islamic clothes is a right of every person,” Chairman of the Agency said.

He said that he is not planning to ban wearing hijabs by the law and noted: “Hijab is not a religious clothes and the most important is that every Kazakh woman understands this.”

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