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Burka row senator seeks ban on face coverings

By Rod McGuirk

An Australian senator who provoked a backlash by wearing a burka in parliament has urged politicians to ban full-face Islamic coverings in public places.

Pauline Hanson, leader of the One Nation minor party, argued for proposed laws that she introduced into the senate that would make wearing full-face coverings an offence punishable by a 4,200 Australian dollar (£2,500) fine.

Compelling others to wear such coverings would carry a prison sentence of up to six months and a 42,000 Australian dollar fine (£25,400), she said.

Ms Hanson proposes several exempt circumstances including entertainment and sport. Three senators including Ms Hanson argued over her bill before a majority of senators shut down debate until a later date.

PM Malcolm Turnbull has ruled out his conservative government ever banning Islamic face coverings.

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