A Quebec Superior Court justice has strongly criticized a lower court judge's insistence that a Montreal woman, Rania El-Alloul, remove her hijab in order to have her case heard in court.

"The court sympathizes with Ms. El-Alloul and deeply regrets how she was treated," wrote Justice Wilbrod Décarie in a decision released this week.

The remarks represent a rebuke of controversial comments made last year by Quebec Court Judge Eliana Marengo.

During a hearing in February 2015, Marengo told El-Alloul she would not hear her case unless she removed her hijab.

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