ANKARA (QHA) - Turkey lifted a ban on women wearing the Islamic head scarf in state institutions on Tuesday, ending a decades-old restriction as part of a package of reforms meant to bolster democracy, Reuters informs. The ban, whose roots date back almost 90 years to the early days of the Turkish Republic, has kept many women from joining the public work force. "A regulation that formally intervened in freedom of clothing and lifestyle - a source of inequality, discrimination and injustice among our people - has become history," Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on his Twitter account. As reported, the lifting of the ban, based on a cabinet decree from 1925 when Ataturk introduced a series of clothing reforms meant to banish overt symbols of religious affiliation for civil servants, is part of a "democratisation package" unveiled by Erdogan last week. The reform programme - in large part aimed at bolstering the rights of Turkey's Kurdish community - included changes to the electoral system, the broadening of language rights and permission for villages to use their original Kurdish names.

QHA