Turkish PM slams court ruling denying headscarf-wearing teacher promotion Katerina Ossenova at 2:22 PM ET
[JURIST] Insisting his was a country where freedom prevailed, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan [Prime Ministry website] Saturday expressly condemned a new ruling by Turkey's high administrative court that a teacher should be refused promotion because of her decision to wear a religious headscarf outside of her classes. Religious dress [JURIST news archive] has been a controversial issue in Turkey, with the Islamic-oriented Justice and Development Party [party website in Turkish] government demanding that the ban on women wearing headscarves in schools and other public accommodations be lifted while the courts and the military, harking back to secularist policies [backgrounder] set in the era of state founder Kemal Ataturk [profile], continue to restrict Islamic influence on the nation.
The Council of State [official website] held that teacher Aytac Kilinc was setting a bad example for her students and had violated secular principles rooted in the Turkish constitution [text] which prevents the state from showing a preference for a particular religion. Kilinc plans to appeal the denial of her promotion to the European Court of Human Rights [official website]. In November 2005, the ECHR ruled [press release] that Turkey can ban [JURIST report] the wearing of headscarves in public and private universities in an effort to minimize extremist political movements. AP has more.
Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible, ad-free format.