German swimming pool bans ‘burqini’ for Muslim women

Berlin: A style of swimwear has caused an uproar at a public pool in Germany, but the culprit is not a revealing bikini. Instead, it’s the “burqini” that’s been banned — the modest swimsuit worn by some Muslim women.

When the indoor pool in Neutraubling, Germany, held a women-only day, one of the swimmers opted to wear a burqini while swimming and participating in water aerobics.

However, her attire led to complaints from other women at the pool, Mittelbayerische newspaper reported.

The move was also criticized by the town’s mayor, Heinz Kiechle.

“Why the burqini as a full-body suit would be necessary to wear during a women’s swim day is for me incomprehensible,” he said, as quoted by The Local.

Kiechle also told Mittelbayerische that it “contradicts the basic idea of integration and mutual recognition which is always being discussed in many towns”.

According to the mayor, the ban on burqinis has to do with a rule which states that “only generally typical apparel” can be worn in the swimming pool. He stressed that an exception will not be given to Muslim women.