Let’s talk: Should non-Muslims be forced to wear headscarf in the Middle East?

Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark have officially begun their controversial five-day tour of Saudi Arabia, but it’s what
Let's Talk

Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark have officially begun their controversial five-day tour of Saudi Arabia, but it’s what Mary wore (or didn’t wear) that had chins wagging.

It is a well-known tradition for all women in the Middle Eastern country to cover up with a headscarf, however Princess Mary decided against it (it is optional but looked-down-upon).

Photos have emerged on social media of the Australian-born Princess and her husband with the Saudi royal family and their meeting with King Salman bin Abdulaziz at the Royal Palace. While the 44-year-old Princess covered up for the occasion in a long black top, she had no covering over her head.

Saudi females are required to wear a headscarf and loose robes in public, and need male accompaniment whenever they leave the house.

Despite refusal to wear the headscarf, Princess Mary looked very neat and conservative, with a pink scarf flowing.

You may remember in January 2015 Michelle Obama, was criticised by both people in America and Saudi Arabia after she visited the country and decided not to wear a headscarf.

Other female royals have made the call to wear a headscarf in a Muslim country: the Duchess of Cornwall Camilla did so when visiting Saudi Arabia and the Duchess of Cambridge covered up with a white scarf at The Assyakirin Mosque in Malaysia in 2012.

Some suggest those who choose not to wear a headscarf are making a bold statement, while others believe it is simply impolite.

We want to know today: how do you feel about it? Would you wear a headscarf out of respect? Should foreigners respect the customs?

  1. Rae Townsend

    Agree with Princess Mary. She should not have to wear a head dress.

    • Kristina Trafford-Jones  

      I too agree it works both ways doesnt it.The Princess was very respectful in her attire as would be expected no ereason to question it.

    • Tina Chapman  

      I agree I would not wear a head scarf. She is not Muslim its Muslim that’s wants to.great.!

  2. Rae Townsend

    Agree with Princess Mary. She should not have to wear a head dress.

  3. Karen Jones

    Only if they wear our style of dress when they are here. Does that happen?

    • Patricia Hewitt

      We don’t have a custom dress code in Australia! When I went to Dubai I always made sure my arms were covered as they have signs on the entrances to public places. So I adhered to them. Yet as a catholic by birth I was told to cover my head when I went to church! So I did. When I went to Saint peters in Rome there was no dress regulation? Go figure.

      • If I recall correctly, Catholic women world wide were no longer required to wear a head covering after Vatican Two, circa 1966, but there was a notice outside St Peters way back in 1998 that female visitors had to cover their arms. Even today any woman wishing to approach the Western Wall in Jerusalem needs to be “modestly” dressed and a nice lady offers a cotton shawl to anyone she thinks needs to cover up. I have worn teeshort and jeans with no problems.

  4. Karen Jones

    Only if they wear our style of dress when they are here. Does that happen?

    • Patricia Hewitt

      We don’t have a custom dress code in Australia! When I went to Dubai I always made sure my arms were covered as they have signs on the entrances to public places. So I adhered to them. Yet as a catholic by birth I was told to cover my head when I went to church! So I did. When I went to Saint peters in Rome there was no dress regulation? Go figure.

  5. Merrilyn Morgan

    They do what they bloody like in other countries why the hell should we change for them

  6. Merrilyn Morgan

    They do what they bloody like in other countries why the hell should we change for them

    • I agree with you, until they take our way of living when they are in our country we should not be made to adopt their culture when in their country.

      • What’s worse is the Islam cancer is spreading in our country. So often you hear that some of our culture and traditions have ceased because it offends Muslims. They are less than 3% of our population! Why are our politicians rolling over for the minority? 80% of the groceries you buy in Australian supermarkets has a Halal tax paid on it! I strongly protest having to support this non-multicultural religion. Not Happy!!

    • elaine king  

      Good on ù mary. 2hy should u have 2 change your customs 4 those ppl. Muslim clothing 4 women should be barred in australia.. us women fought 4 our rights 4 freedom women should be allowed be free. For some reason ive wondered why women wear their drab clothing on the streets. Ive got nasty replies fr muslim women saying its their right.. what r they afraid of. Australia is a free country. Religion is not what it use 2 be.. in history if u didnt go tovchurch u were jailed.. church of england religion if u didnt convert fr catholic cos a king wanted a quicky divorce u were decapitated. Fear has come thro families lines.. gotta go 2 church… why… .. re religious beliefs but do the religious leaders n supporters follow the 10 commandments.. bet not.. neither do the muslims

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