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South African military court drops case against hijab-wearing Major

South Africa

A South African military court this week withdrew charges against a female officer, Major Fatima Isaacs who refused to remove her headscarf under her military beret.

The decision was taken during a brief appearance by the Major in the military court at the Castle of Good Hope in Cape Town on Wednesday.

Her representative, Nazeema Mohammed, confirmed that the case which had been going on for the last few months had been withdrawn.

“Today the Legal Resources Centre legal team was in the process of advising the SANDF (South African National Defence Force) and the military court that we want the proceedings to be stayed, and before we could do this we were advised in court that all charges against Fatima Isaacs have been withdrawn.”

Despite the withdrawal, the major’s legal rep insists that they will take the case in front of an equality court to fight against discrimination within the South African forces.

Lawyer Nazeema added: “To us the issue is broad in the South African context, coming where we come from. She struggled to liberate the country from, you know, discrimination and now we fighting within the year 2019 and 2020 discrimination in its rawest form in one of our state departments.”

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