The Foreign Ministry today (16) insisted that a ban has not been enforced on the burqa and niqab and that it is only a proposal.
The Ministry said recent media reports have highlighted statements made in regard to a proposal to ban the wearing of the burqa and niqab in Sri Lanka.
Issuing a statement, Foreign Secretary Admiral Professor Jayanath Colombage said that a decision has not been taken by the Government to impose such a ban.
He said it is merely a proposal, which is under discussion.
Admiral Prof. Colombage said this proposal has been based on the precautionary measures that are needed on national security grounds, following the investigations of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) on Easter Sunday attacks.
He further said the Government will initiate a broader dialogue with all parties concerned and sufficient time will be taken for necessary consultations to be held and for a consensus to be reached.
Minister of Public Security Sarath Weerasekera announced on Saturday (13) that he has signed the cabinet paper proposing a ban on the burqa and niqab due to national security concerns.
Following the statement, the proposal gained wide attention among the public, while the Government today defended the move, saying it was an internal security matter.
Cabinet Co-spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said that the Government will not rush through the process to ban the face coverings. (Colombo Gazette)