Critics are questioning the motivation behind the federal government's decision to appeal a judge's ruling that allows women to wear a face-concealing niqab while taking the oath of citizenship.

A Federal Court judge said last Friday that Zunera Ishaq, a Pakistani woman now living in Mississauga, did not have to remove her niqab when taking the oath of citizenship, ruling that the law only requires someone to sign a form saying they've taken the oath.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday the government will appeal the decision.

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