Swiss force Muslim girls into mixed swimming lessons

Europe's top court upholds fines on Swiss Muslim parents who refused to allow their daughters in mixed swimming lessons

Swiss force Muslim girls into mixed swimming lessons

World Bulletin / News Desk

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Tuesday approved a decision to fine Muslim parents who refused to send their daughters to attend mixed swimming lessons on the basis of their religion.

The parents Aziz Osmanoglu and Sehabat Kocabas, both Turkish-Swiss dual nationals in Basel, Switzerland, appealed to the court after they were fined €1,300 by education authorities in Basel when they declined to allow their daughters to take part in mixed swimming lessons.

The Court found that "the applicants’ right to manifest their religion was in issue and observed that the authorities’ refusal to grant them an exemption from swimming lessons had been an interference with the freedom of religion."

However, it approved the decision saying that the swimming lessons were not just to learn to swim, it was important for the child to take part in that activity with all the other pupils, with no exception on account of the child’s origin or the parents’ religious or philosophical convictions.

Last year in Switzerland, two girls, aged 12 and 14, were denied citizenship after they refused to participate in mixed swimming lessons for religious reasons.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 10 Ocak 2017, 20:50