Cabinet approval was granted to ban all face coverings including the burqa and niqab, Public Security Cabinet Minister Dr Sarath Weerasekara said.
Weerasekara told the Daily Mirror that the decision will be implemented as a law after parliamentary approval is obtained.
The cabinet approval was granted according to the public bill of Prohibition on covering the full face in public places.
“I requested approval to draft a law for the covering of full-face adhering to the quarantine law which means there will be no prohibition to wear face masks to prevent the COVID-19 virus,” Minister Weerasekera said.
The covering of the full face automatically includes the burqa and niqab.
He said the move came nearly two years after a wave of coordinated attacks on hotels and churches on Easter Sunday.
On March 11, Minister Weerasekara signed the cabinet paper over the ban on wearing the burqa in public places and the reason for the move directly affects the national security of the country.