A Clash of Principles: Examining the Niqab in Canadian Courts

This post was written by guest contributor Maria Salman.In 1992, a young woman gathers the courage to pen a deeply personal journal entry for a teacher. She finally breaks the silence over an earth-shattering secret that she is the survivor of childhood sexual abuse committed against her by two male family members. Fast forward ten years, the police lays charges, and the trial begins, but when the young woman is called upon to testify, she is startled to find an unexpected barrier before her … [Read more...]

678: A Film to Appreciate

Egypt, like the rest of the Middle East, has been suffering for a long time from street harassment. Naturally, different Egyptian intellects have been trying to emphasize the problem and highlight what can be the start of solving it. Mohamed Diab, a young Egyptian writer, wrote and directed the movie “678,” which focuses on this very dangerous phenomenon. You can see a trailer (in Arabic) here.“678” is the story of three very different Egyptian women who all experience street harassment. Seba ( … [Read more...]

Disorder in the Court: the Niqab and the Courtroom in Canada

A Toronto judge has recently ruled that a complainant in a sexual assault trial - who happens to wear the niqab, a face-covering worn by a small percentage of Muslim women - will have to uncover her face in order to testify.  According to this article, The judge, Ontario Court Justice Norris Weisman, determined he had the jurisdictional authority to make that ruling under the Canada Evidence Act, because it involves the manner in which the woman is to give testimony, the fundamental right of a … [Read more...]