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Female Shopkeepers In Dushanbe Told To Remove Head Scarves

DUSHANBE (RFE/RL) -- Female store clerks in the Tajik capital say that officials are demanding that they stop wearing traditional Islamic head scarves.

Women have told RFE/RL's Tajik Service that Dushanbe officials have raided shops and told women with head scarves to start wearing European-style clothes instead.

Dushanbe officials refused to comment on the reports by the saleswomen.

Qobiljon Boev, of Tajikistan's Islamic Council, says that the council opposes European-style clothes for Tajik women because they do not correspond to Islamic standards under Shari'a law.

Tajikistan has greater ties to Islamic heritage and traditions than most other Central Asian countries, even though the Tajik government has made great efforts to secularize the country since gaining independence in 1991.