Italian politician fined for staging anti-burqa protest

Daniela Santanchè anti-burqa protestA well-known Italian right-wing politician was fined Monday for staging a protest against the wearing of burqas and other Islamic veils for women.

Daniela Santanchè, a leading member of the conservative Forza Italia party of former premier Silvio Berlusconi, organized the action in Milan four years ago, outside a building where Muslims were holding end-of-Ramadan prayers.

She was handed a four-day jail sentence and a 100-euro (135-dollar) fine for not warning police about her protest. The punishment was converted into a 1,100-euro fine. The politician criticized the ruling and said she would appeal.

Courts also slapped a 2,500-euro fine on an Egyptian man who punched Santanchè during her protest.

In 2006, when she was given a police escort after being threatened by an imam, Santanchè said that “the veil is a symbol of women‘s submission.” She also wrote a critical book on the condition of Muslim women.

DPA, 2 December 2013