Veils in court – should they be allowed?


The media have been riveted in recent days by a drama in Blackfriars Crown Court, where a defendant charged with intimidating a witness refused to remove her full-face veil or ‘niqab’.

The defendant is a convert to Islam, who cannot be named for “legal reasons”. She claimed that the niqab is a manifestation of her religious beliefs, and that to compel her to remove it would violate her rights under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights.