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The New York Times

Welcome to Weimar

May 3, 2017 | Society

The German woman, herself an immigrant from Ghana, jerked forward with such force her hoop earrings swung like pendulums. “The whole thing is to have power over women,” declared Mona Fofie, 24, speaking of the Muslim head covering called hijab.

The Syrian man, one of 900 asylum-seekers welcomed in Weimar, Germany, was no less upset. “Have you asked them?” demanded Anas Alkarri, 28. “I think you will find it is their choice to wear the hijab.”

She pressed on: “I have heard that women can’t worship in the mosque. Is this true?”

He scoffed: “Of course they can worship in the mosque. This is a misconception. There is a separate section in the back for them.”

The German woman stifled a gasp. “A separate section? Oh my God.”