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Belgian court allows Muslim school girls to wear veil

BRUSSELS, Feb 23 (KUNA) -- A court in the Belgian town of Tongeren ruled Friday that 14 Muslim girls who attend two state schools must be allowed to wear the veil at school, despite a general ban on veils and headscarves in Flemish state schools in northern Belgium.
According to Belgian media reports, the girls' parents took legal action as they didn't agree with ban at the two schools their daughters attend.
The Tongeren judge responsible for communication with the press, Ariane Braccio, told the Belgian VRT News network that "in reaching its decision the court took into account provisions made in the European Treaty on Human Right that obliges all EU countries, including Belgium, to allow its citizens to practice their religion in complete freedom.
"Exceptions are allowed if there are issues with segregation or pressure being applied to convert. However, this was not the case here," she said.
Five of the 14 girls are now at other schools. The others can now wear their veils in class, unless the schools appeal against the ruling , said the reports. (end) nk.bs