World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkey's prime minister said on Wednesday that a new constitution could eliminate question marks about headscarf issue.
Turkey still insists on imposing headscarf ban as a country whose population is 99 percent Muslim and majority of women wear headscarf as a religious practice.
Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he was attaching importance to the period after the parliamentary elections due in summer of 2011, in a move that delays freedom to headscarf on constitutional level to until after general votes.
"I think a new constitution can eliminate question marks," Erdogan told reporters before he flew to South Korea.
Headscarves were banned on university campuses in the late 1990s through a Constitutional Court ruling on the grounds that allowing them to be worn would violate the nation's secular principles because the headscarf was seen as a political and religious symbol.
Erdogan also said he hoped the new constitution to be passed with a broad compromise.
Turkey indeed attempted to lift the ban previously.
In early February 2008, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) with the support of the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) passed a constitutional amendment that would have lifted the ban on wearing the headscarf at university campuses. However, upon an appeal by the staunchly secular CHP and its ally, the Democratic Left Party (DSP), the Constitutional Court ruled that Parliament had "violated" the constitutionally enshrined principle of secularism when it passed amendments to remove the scarf ban and annulled the amendment.
Turkey voted a constitutional amendment package on September 12, and 57.88 percent of Turkish people voted in favor of the package.
Turkish government has recently relaxed the strict ban at universities as Higher Board of Education ordered rectors not to sack headscarved students from the class.
Rocket fire on Kilis province will not be left unanswered, says President Erdogan
UN Population Fund Turkey Representative Kulessa says country is working hard to shelter some 3 million refugees
'We are ready to take all measures that we need, both inside Turkey and outside, to provide for our own security,' PM Davutoglu says
Turkey believes Bosnia can be a major production base, for the European market, and for Chinese investment, says deputy PM
Ahmet Davutoglu says terror group failed to honor committments during 'solution process'
ISIL has launched two more devices at Kilis on Wednesday, prompting artillery fire from Turkish forces
Domestic papers cover major anti-fraud operation which saw over 100 people – including pharmacists, medics and nurses – held
More than 30 journalists call for release of colleagues detained by Egyptian police
A new Turkish Airlines air route will have flights will run three times a week
Latest bombardment marks almost a week of indiscriminate attacks on border city
In response to ISIL rocket attacks on Kilis, southern Turkey, Turkish forces target armed group in northern Syria
With its forecasted 3.5 percent performance, Turkey estimated to grow more than most EU countries
A total of 820 suspects have been detained in nationwide operations
Changes will come into force after EU accepts visa-free travel for Turkish citizens