France's Kenza Drider, dressed in a niqab, speaks with reporters during a press conference in Montreuil, east of Paris, on Tuesday. Image Credit: AP

Dubai: The veil must be banned all over the world, according to Mutassem, an Emirati government employee.

"People are not free to cover their face," he said. "Some if not many used the veil to cover up some dangerous behaviours that could affect the security of whole nations," said the 35-year-old father of three.

Women who perform the Haj and Umrah never have to cover their faces, he said. "I'm a Muslim and I strictly follow the rules of Islam but I cannot deal with someone who keeps their face covered as I won't know who that person is," he said.

He said the hijab remained a must for Muslim women but the veil was unacceptable and extended full support to the French ban on face veils.

Mohammad, an Egyptian national, said Muslim scholars throughout history had never struck agreement on whether the veil was mandatory for women or not. "How we will ask France to allow the veil," he asked.

Mohammad said that he came from a conservative family and his wife and all women in his family wore the hijab. He also agreed with Mutassem that the veil could be used as a disguise by extremist elements. "Many used the veil as a cover to execute terrorist crimes in Egypt."

Mohammad said Islam offered protection to all believers and therefore a prohibition of anything that could adversely affect the safety of people was justified.

Abdul Rahman, a Syrian national, said the veil was a personal choice best left to women themselves.

However, he said that women should not be allowed to wear the veil if there were security reasons. "In Muslim and non-Muslim countries, the veil should be avoided for security reasons only," he said. "My mother and sister wear a hijab but they don't wear the veil."

Ahmad, an Emirati government employee, said instances of people wearing a veil and engaging in illegal practices were not hard to come across. "I work in a place wear it is banned for women to wear the veil and I support this decision," he said.