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Friday, May 7, 1999 Published at 07:41 GMT 08:41 UK

World: Europe

Turkish prosecutor demands banning of Islamists

The Chief Prosecutor in Turkey has opened a case to ban the pro-Islamic Virtue Party.

The prosecutor, Vural Savas, has asked the country's Constitutional Court to rule that the party is trying to overthrow the secular constitution.

His move follows uproar in parliament on Sunday when a Virtue Party woman deputy, Merve Kavakci, arrived for a swearing-in ceremony, wearing a headscarf, which is banned in public offices and schools.

Mr Savas was behind last year's closure of a previous Islamist party, Welfare, which briefly led the Turkish government.

Most of the Welfare Party's deputies regrouped in the Virtue Party behind a new leadership.

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