Europe's most senior rabbi has issued an impassioned defence of the right of Muslim women to wear a burka in public.

Pinchas Goldschmidt, the president of the Conference of European Rabbis, said that a European Court of Human Rights ruling upholding France's ban on veils "crossed a red line" for religious freedom.

In an article for Telegraph.co.uk he said that he was "deeply suspicious" of claims that the prohibition on wearing a burka or a niqab in public was designed to promote relations between communities.

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