Judge Stefan Wikmark is concerned about people in his courtroom since he is afraid there might be terrorists lurking behind the faces of those present. “I feel responsible for order in this court room and I feel I can’t achieve that if I am unable to see the faces of those present.” He therefore ordered the removal of three Muslim women who he claimed were wearing niqabs to disguise their faces. The women were attempting to attend the trial of Abi Aziz Mahamud, charged with planing an attack or a murder of Roda Sten, an artist.
Actually, the women were wearing burqas, not niqabs, but what the heck, it is a face covering. The women were not on trial, they were not witnesses, they simply were spectators to the trial. The Swedish secret service, Sapo(talk about an appropriate name for a secret service) originally claimed four Muslim men were going to murder someone and after releasing one, downgraded charges to “planning” to kill someone.
I am confused. Am I to assume judges survey the faces of all spectators in order to ascertain –what? Why are judges worried about faces? I would assume they would be more concerned about what is in the minds of people, not their faces.