Belgium: Wearing of Veil Banned from Flemish Schools?

Source: FSSPX News

On this past September 11,the Board for Education of the Flemish Community decided to forbid wearing the veil in all the Flemish public schools —70 in all — as of the school year 2010-2011. The decision was made after an auditor of the State Council had declared that schools were not allowed to take this type of decision on their own, and that only the Board of Education for the Schools of the Flemish Community had the authority to rule.
Cardinal Godfried Danneels, Archbishop of Malines-Brussels, and Primate of Belgium denounced such a decision. Whereas the French-speaking public schools claim for a rule to forbid the display of any religious or partisan sign in schools, the cardinal declared on the Flemish RV that “the general ban does not favor integration.” “It might be a lesser evil, but it is certainly not the ideal solution,” he explained. He added: “If wearing the veil is imposed under duress it is […] a way to oppress woman, in my eyes, the problem lies there.”
In Antwerp, it was decided that the ban would  apply to all schools, included private Catholic schools. The Flemish decision was strongly condemned by Muslim associations, which are considering retaliating by opening Islamic schools. The Belgian Muslim community, mainly of Turkish and Moroccan origin, is estimated to number 400,000 persons. It would seem that today Islam is the first religion practiced in Brussels where there is some 80 mosques. (DICI n° 205 – 11/19/2005 – Sources: afp/belga/apic/La Croix)