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Update: Can Australian Police Look Under Muslim Veil? New Law Says Yes

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
In Australia, New South Wales passed a law that would allow police officers to request a Muslim female driver remove her face veil for identification purposes.

NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell said the cabinet approved the decision on Monday to allow proper identification of motorists:

“I don’t care whether a person is wearing a motor cycle helmet, a burqa, niqab, face veil or anything else, the police should be allowed to require those people to make their identification clear.”

While Australian Federal law prohibits restraint on the free exercise of religion, analysts say there is no such restraint on the passage of a state law.

A couple of weeks ago, The Blaze covered the case that has spawned all this legal wrangling here. Carnita Matthews, a Muslim woman, refused during a traffic stop to remove the face veil on her burka. She then claimed the police officer tried to rip it off of her.

A video captured that incident, which was used to convict Matthews of making a deliberately false statement. As a result, she was sentenced to six months in jail.

On appeal, however, a judge overturned that verdict because he could not determine that Matthews was definitively the person who made the claim. She had her Burka on and was not positively identified at the time.

CNN has more:

This new law will likely prevent — or at least limit — uncertainty when incidents between Muslim women and law enforcement officials occur.

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