Argentina introduces hijab-friendly law

Argentina, January 26: Argentina has introduced new legislation giving more freedom to its Muslim population to practice their faith without the fear of persecution.

The administration of Argentinean President Cristina Fernandez pushed for the legislation, which allows Muslim women to wear hijab in public places, the Media correspondent in Buenos Aires reported on Tuesday.

According to the new law, Argentinean Muslim women can use photographs wearing headscarves for their national ID cards.

It is said that the law can help promote freedom of religion and expression in the Latin American country and will help the Muslim community to better integrate into the Argentinean society.

Fernandez said, “Our message to everybody, and all the countries of the world, is that we can resolve our differences for better causes.”

She added, “Different views — particularly about religion — should never be forced onto others.”

The director of the Islamic Center of Argentina, Samir Salech, has welcomed the news, saying that the law enables Muslim women to have ID cards without having to remove their hijab, which undercuts their belief in Islam.

The government says it will enforce the law to the best of its ability and in collaboration with police forces, the judiciary, and the business community.

According to a 2009 Pew Research Center report, the Muslim community makes up about two percent of the Argentinean population. The Shia community of the country is mainly located in Buenos Aires, Tucuman, Rosario, and Mar del Plata.

Despite being far away from Islamic countries, Argentina’s Muslims follow their traditions and are united with the Islamic world in their rituals.

On Tuesday, Arbaeen, the fortieth day after the anniversary of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein (PBUH), was commemorated at Buenos Aires’ Tohid Mosque.