A leading Saudi cleric hit out at France for moving to ban Muslim face-veils, but approved Muslim women foregoing veils when visiting a country which outlaws them, a Saudi paper reported on Saturday.
"It is illogical and unreasonable that the French government undertakes such a thing, which is condemned by neutral people, not just Muslims, because the secular state assures freedom of religion," Sheikh Aed al-Qarni told Al-Hayat.
"The state has to respect religious rituals and beliefs, including those of Muslims," he said in an interview.
However, he added, if Muslim women are in a country that has banned the niqab, or full-face veil, or if they face harassment in such a place, "it is better that the Muslim woman uncovers her face."
Numerous scholars of various Islamic schools of thought agree that Muslim women can respect veil bans.
That should end the debate.