” url=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/fotorita/2073872176/sizes/l/in/photostream/”]The Daily Mail seems to have found an unexpected consequence of European burqa bans: a boost in tourism for the UK.France became the first European to ban the full-viel worn in some Islamic communities, banning the burqa in April.
This month, Belgium implemented a ban.
Now, the Daily Mail reports, high-end British stores are seeing a surge in international visitors. Liberty and Selfridges, both located in London’s West End, report seeing 45 and 40 per cent rises respectively.
Neil Cook, managing editor of the Gulf Times, told the Mail that, “‘There is some kind of backlash against the burqa ban – people are more comfortable with London.”
The change may be a serious loss for the continental tourist industry – Arab tourists are thought to spend £2,000 ($3,269) each in the city’s priciest stores, according to the New West End Company, a body representing 600 retailers on Bond Street, Oxford Street and Regent Street (via Arabian Business).
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