Egypt Ministry Spokesperson Denies Child Hijab Ban Despite Education Minister’s Comments

Egypt Ministry Spokesperson Denies Child Hijab Ban Despite Education Minister’s Comments

Photo via Akhbarak
Photo via Akhbarak

This article has been updated following new statements by the Ministry’s spokesperson that contradicted the Minister’s statements

The spokesperson for Egypt’s Ministry of Education has denied that the government has implemented a ban on the hijab at schools for children who haven’t reached puberty, reported state-media Al-Ahram.

Egypt’s Minister of Education Moheb Al-Refaei had declared on Saturday night that children will not be allowed to wear the hijab (head-scarf) at school.

In statements given during an interview to the television show ‘Ten in the Evening’, hosted by Wael El-Ebrashy, the Minister of Education said that Islam does not call upon girls to wear the hijab until they reach puberty, reported Youm7.

However, the Minister did not clarify when this ban would take effect and whether it would apply to all year/grade levels in Egypt. Moreover, it was not clarified whether the ban would apply to private schools.

On Sunday night, Egypt’s Ministry of Education spokesperson told Ahram Online and Al-Ahram that no such ban has been implemented despite the Minister’s comments. The spokesperson stated that the minister’s comments were simply his own opinion and that people have the freedom to wear the hijab should the choose to do so.

It was not made clear, however, whether the Ministry would implement the Minister’s comments in the future. The start of the new school year is set to commence in September.

The topic of dress codes at school arose after Egypt’s Ministry of Education referred a school headmaster to investigations after he was found to be wearing the jalabiya (a traditional Egyptian garment often worn in rural areas).

During a surprise visit to a school in the Sharqiya governorate, Sharqia’s governor Reda Abdel Sallam referred the primary school’s headmaster and teachers to be investigated after they were found to be wearing the ‘improper outfits’.

On television, Minister Al-Refaei addressed this issue, stating that the Ministry did not mean to insult or embarrass the teachers but that there must be a certain level of professionalism at schools across Egypt. To ensure teachers are able to abide by proper dress-codes, the Minister proposed providing clothing to teachers at a subsidized price.

The Minister also promised to work to raise the salaries of teachers across Egypt.

Whether the Minister’s recent statements on live television will be welcomed remains to be seen. Controversy had recently erupted after multiple restaurants, clubs, beaches and pools were found to be banning women dressed in the hijab. In response to the outrage, Egypt’s Minister of Tourism had announced that any restaurants or tourism facilities found to be banning the veil would be shut down.

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  • Jay Dillon

    throw them into prison if they try to wear Islamofascist garments that can be used to attack and kill innocent people and innocent nonMuslims. people don’t like their heads getting cut off and we all hate Islamofascists and their sympathizers because of it. Every time I see the disgusting behavior of these evil demons I want them wiped off the planet. Islamofascists are not worth the toilet paper they are printed on.


  • Layla Muhammad

    I am in egypt I have not heard of this but I would not be surprised. Egypt has a tyrant for president and its all were fault, also the want to butt kiss the USA and be close to western as the possible can.

  • Layla Muhammad

    This is an order from Allah there is no choice in the matter and I will not have any one trying to make me go against what Allah has said. I will never take off my hijab and neither will my daughter. For All the ones who are for this. I pray Allah will curse each and every of you to the fullest a meen

  • Destiny Paradise

    I agree that children should not have to wear hijab but you cannot legislate these matters instead you have to educate

  • Destiny Paradise

    I agree that children should not have to wear hijab but you cannot legislate these decisions instead educate the falilies dont force them,but I agree Muslims have a lack of understanding about a lot of things and children should not be force to wear hijab

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  • BlueRiverWhiteLily

    The only moral flashpoint, for me, is any re-inforcement of cultural traditions, religious or not, which flag up a girl’s puberty. Females are already subjected to obsessive intrusion on their sexuality and how it should be kept under control or exploited. Adolescence is a difficult time for all youngsters, and a girl’s fertility should be a private matter for her alone. Any headscarf or other signal to the world of a girl’s sensitive transition to womanhood is a gross invasion. It would be more respectful of their dignity if all girls were free to wear hijab whenever they choose, and at ALL ages.

  • MJD

    If a girl or woman chooses to wear it or not should be her decision-not that of her father, husband or the government.

  • I think if a young girl makes the decisions by herself to wear a head scarf then she should be allowed to wear one at school. Just in the same way that a child who wants to wear a crucifix should be allowed to. If however the one religious symbol is not tolerated the other should not be either. Additionally, as stated in the beginning it needs to be a choice.

  • Ikhwanii Extincticus

    The Quran tells women to cover their breasts. There is NOTHING in the Quran telling them to cover their heads. NOTHING!

    • True, but that would mean that believers actually read their holy books. And as we know that is not even close to the truth.

    • MJD

      So, when they are covering their hair, that is a family or cultural thing. Or a personal choice. So, why make it like it is a crime against society to wear a hijab which is not mandated by Islam? Freedom is freedom and it works in BOTH directions. If truly freedom it is!

    • Layla Muhammad

      Spoken like a true Kufar.

      • Ikhwanii Extincticus

        Spoken like a true Takfiri.

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  • Faux-News

    Another one of them fantasy stories cooked up from something totally different.

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  • Iqbal Rizvi

    About time, some commonsense, progressive idea from a Muslim government.

  • Pingback: Egypt bans girls from wearing hijabs to school - until they reach puberty | Expressivus()

  • “FREEDOM” is giving these girls the CHOICE to wear it or to remove it. Saying “I forbid you from wearing this” makes you no better than saying “I forbid you from removing this”

    • Isi

      girls at that age don’t chose, they imitate or get told to …. I don’t agree with the ban but it isn’t a question of choice for the girls if you think about it…its the choice of parents, school, society. A girl under 12 is not just going to come up with the idea that she needs to cover up in order not to appear seductive to the males around her, usually also under 12.

  • Radwa

    their so-called “freedom”

    • Jayson

      If you hate freedom, go to the Islamic State and live like a proud slave of allah.

      • Radwa

        Then, it seems that Germany turned out to be an Islamic state.

      • wouldn’t freedom be giving them the CHOICE to wear it?

        • Anonymous

          This isn’t freedom, these children didn’t know why they wear this, they just wear it because their parents told them “It’s good thing” not because they believe in that.
          In my school female teachers forced girls to wearing headscarf a lot of these girls take it off once they leave the school.
          One of these teachers reprove a Christian girl for uncover her hair and she didn’t know that the girl isn’t muslim, another teacher reprove a girl because she take it off.
          It’s not only headscarf, in Egyptian schools they reprove any girl for use nail polish.
          Face it, IT ISN’T THEIR CHOICE.

          • Layla Muhammad

            How do you know if you are even Muslim to begin with how would you know what we teach our kids. really you need to think before you open your mouth.

          • Ikhwanii Extincticus

            Layla maybe you can teach your kids how to clean up their trash in the streets. After all isn’t that part of Islam? keeping yourself and your streets clean.

          • Ikhwanii Extincticus

            You teach your kids how to hate a women who has just died and has done nothing to you just because you hate her son. So much hatred you have inside of you. So UnIslamic. You shame the names of Layla and Mohammed.

  • Jayson

    Why does a child need to wear a hijab when it has been a symbol to control male sexual desire? How sick are you Muslims?

    • Layla Muhammad

      because we dont want scum like you and perverts lusting out our daughter. And because Its an order from our Lord. Ask your self why Mary the mother of Jesus who in all the pictures has on a scarf over her head. So the same reason mary the mother of jesus wear it. I will too and so will my daughters

      • Ikhwanii Extincticus

        Mary like all the Middle eastern women AND MEN of the time wore it because of the sunshine!

        • Layla Muhammad

          no she wore it because her lord told her to do so. May allah curse you and your lies. I will wait to see tho, because there was something posted from this site, that was a hoax a lie.

          • Ikhwanii Extincticus

            Layla you are the one who is lying but that does not surprise me at all. There is absolutely NO evidence whatsoever that Allah told Mary to cover her head with a scarf. None! Zero! Zilch! Prove me wrong instead of more insults…..prove me wrong

  • Jayson

    Crybaby CAIR is losing this one with 56% of the people agreeing with this ban.

  • ZKhan

    Shame on thug leaders

  • Anonymous Coward

    Even from a religious point of view, this is a right decision.
    Freedom does not include the freedom to REMOVE the freedom of your children to choose their own beliefs.

    Even for muslims, if I a woman wears this, it should be because she WANTS TO. Because she CHOOSES TO. Not because you were forced to wear it as a child and your parents beat you if you didn’t wear it everyday. That is just bullshit indoctrination. Like a kind of training you give to an animal, do this or you will not be fed. There is no spirituality in this. It is just hypocrisy!

    For example, do you want children NOT to lie, steal, kill because it harms others. Or is it more right that they don’t do these negative behaviors because they are AFRAID OF YOU and raised on FEAR of consequences.

    Children should be taught the golden rule, treat others as you want to be treated. Religious beliefs should up to them when they grow up and make their own mind on the matter.

    • Reply

      Your argument would’ve been plausible if you took into account that some of these children could actually want to wear the hijab. This ban, essentially, is infringing on a woman’s right, regardless of her age, to make her own decision. Yes, many if not most parents may force their children to wear it, but this ban does not deal with that; it merely covers it up with another patriarchichal stand that will probably have no effect on the parents’ views on raising their daughters anyway.

      • Anonymous Coward

        Rereading your reply, yes, covering it up with a ban is not the perfect solution, but it is like damage control. It must be simultaneously accompanied with re-education.

        I personally don’t believe that you can give ignorant, brainwashed people (who happen to be a majority here) the kind of freedom the west has.

        True democracy only works when there are enough educated people to not make stupid decisions. You don’t take people who have the mentality of an immature child (10 year old) and tell them: “Here, go and live your life and make all of your decisions by yourselves”.

        That of course doesn’t excuse the current corruption, but I wish there was a way to prevent it from becoming really bad until enough people are educated (if ever).

      • Anonymous Coward

        For some reason, my original reply didn’t show up here. So I’ll rephrase it:

        Of course if you ask some of those children they’ll say they want to wear it. That’s because mommy and daddy told them: “Look, your friends are wearing it. Your teacher is wearing it. Only bad girls don’t wear it. Bad girls go to hell. God hates bad girls, you don’t want to be a bad girl now do you ?”.

        That is not a valid reason to wear it.
        Saying that we shouldn’t ban it because some people want to wear it is the same as saying we shouldn’t ban smoking in schools because some children want to smoke (peer pressure).

        • MJD

          No, many children want to wear it and ask to. Some here make this as if it is ALL about some deep religious choice. For many children, it is no different than girls in America wanting to play dress up in mom’s clothes. We wanted lipstick, nylons and high heels.Like mommy. We play house. Like mommy. I have friends who were not allowed to wear hijab as children because it was not their family tradition. Is that better? Why does such a personal thing need govt. interferance? None of us approve of it being a law in Iran-why is it better to have that forbidden by law?

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  • JD

    Seems like Egypt finally stepped on the road of a modern, enlightened secular state.

    • Museb Iftakhar

      Secularism is giving the freedom to follow one’s religious beliefs. Somebody should have cared to know the definition first.

      • Jayson

        Your religion is false and a danger to progress.

        • Museb Iftakhar

          Lol. Take it easy, buddy. Go out and enjoy your sunday. It’s important to have a life.

        • Bill Clay

          ALL religion is false and a danger to progress.

          They could be considered benign superstitions, unfortunately too many require their followers to force others to live by their dogma.


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