As a security measure, authorities in Uzbekistan have banned the wearing of hijabs, or Islamic head coverings, until Thursday.
State-run television say there is a risk of terrorists hiding bombs under the Islamic veil to carry out attacks in public places as the country marks its Independence Day, as well as the 2,200th anniversary of the capital, Tashkent, on Tuesday.
Uzbek officials claim that recent attacks and explosions in the country were carried out by militants hiding weapons under hijabs.
Uzbek authorities have put tight security measures in place in the run-up to the nationwide celebrations.
All border points with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have been closed to prevent the possibility of militants entering Uzbek territory.
Police have become more visible in the capital.
As for the ban on the hijab, at least one Islamic veil “expert” believes it won't do much to lessen the risks to public security.
Aheda Zannetti, the creator of the Islamic swimwear known as the “burkini,” says a terrorist doesn't need to hide a bomb in a hijab.
“I can hide a bomb in my underwear,” said Zanetti. “Bombs are getting smaller and sharper.”
Which raises the question: Just how far are Uzbek authorities willing to go with their clothing bans?
-- Farangis Najibullah