Muslim women protest proposed Dutch burqa ban

About two dozen Muslim women protested Thursday outside the Dutch parliament against a proposed ban on the burqa, the head-to-toe Islamic robe. Several protesters wore long robes and veils exposing only their eyes, known as a niqab. "We live in a free country and the government cannot tell us what to do with our religion," protest organizer Ayse Bayrak told The Associated Press. "We don't live in a dictatorship. We don't live under the Taliban, which oppresses women." Hardline Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk is drawing up legislation banning the burqa and other clothes that cover the face in public places.