Muslim veils outlawed in Urumqi, China

URUMQI, China, Dec. 11 (UPI) — The wearing of Islamic veils was banned in Urumqi, capital of China’s western Xinjiang province and the site of simmering ethnic conflict.

The ban on head coverings traditionally worn by Muslim women was approved Wednesday and posted on the Xinjiang regional government’s website Thursday, adding a legal dimension to restrictions, including the posting of signs, warning women not to wear veils or head scarves, and men to stop wearing beards.

The restrictions on Muslim traditions are meant to reduce the ethnic unrest in the city.

The local Uighur population, Muslim and Turkic-speaking, is in conflict with the Han, China’s largest ethnic group…