Evolution Of Anti-Veil Laws To Combat Islamophobia

If it recently changed its leader, in the person of Farid Omeir, the Union of French Muslim Democrats (UDMF) – the political party which emerged in 2012, under the impetus of its founder Nagib Azergui, in a political landscape steep and locked French – continues its momentum.

After having presided over the destinies of this small party for 11 years, under the slogan “Act to no longer suffer”, Nagib Azergui, strong in his progressive roots in France, passed on the torch to his successor.

Historical Creator of The UDMF

Driven by the same political voluntarism as the historical creator of the UDMF, Farid Omeir, its new president, is again on the attack today, on the occasion of the 19th anniversary of the law of March 15, 2004, by denouncing the instrumentalization incessant Islamophobia by the French political class. This incandescent inferno of hatred which is, election after election, year after year, continually rekindled on purpose.

Just 19 years ago today, on March 15, 2004, the law against the #headscarf, renamed the law “against the wearing of religious symbols at school”, was passed by all left-wing and LAW. The first milestone in a witch hunt pushed ever further.

This is neither a myth nor an intimidation aimed at preventing criticism of Islam. It is neither an invention of the mullahs, nor of the “Islamists” to prevent criticism of their social project.

It is neither “imaginary racism” nor “ideological intoxication”. Nor is it an irrational fear of Islam and Muslims, any more than negrophobia or fatphobia would be an irrational fear of black people or overweight people. Islamophobia is a reality experienced in France and around the world, to varying degrees, by Muslims.

Islamophobia is a reality, defined as all acts of rejection, discrimination or violence perpetrated against institutions or individuals because of their membership, real or supposed, of the Muslim religion. And the fight against this scourge is not only topical, but it should be imperative when we know the discrimination and other abuses committed in its name.

It is in the name of Islamophobia that in France, we want to reduce Muslims to invisibility, that we discriminate against veiled women when hiring, that we dissolve associations under false pretexts, that we closing mosques whose representatives are critical of government policy, that imams are expelled without any other form of trial than a prefectural decision, that Muslim denominational schools are closed, that the freedom of expression of preachers or simple Muslims committed to giving pledges to the extreme right, and who are called Islamists or “separatists” whoever dares to oppose this policy or claim their rights.

It is also Islamophobia that leads the Chinese regime to imprison a million Uyghurs in concentration camps, to torture and indoctrinate them, forcing them to renounce Islam.

It is Islamophobia that has driven the Burmese regime to make the Rohingya stateless, victims of apartheid, ethnic cleansing and persecution for decades. It is Islamophobia that drives the Hindu nationalist government to persecute the Muslim minority and encourage punitive expeditions, summary executions and discriminatory practices.

This is why the UN has decided, for the first time, to designate March 15 as the International Day Against Islamophobia. The UDMF welcomes this decision and recalls that Islamophobia in France is often political, and that as such, it must be fought on the political level.

Ironically, this Day is proclaimed on the same day as that on which the French State decided to prohibit, in 2004, the veil in public schools, while neutrality, in accordance with the law of 1905, aimed the representatives of the State and not the users of public services. This unique fact in Europe is unfortunately not anecdotal.

Since this law of March 15, 2004, other laws have targeted Muslims, their visibility in the public space or their commitment. The latest, “law against separatism”, has opened the way to many excesses, in contempt of fundamental public freedoms.

The UDMF will continue to fight, as it has done at each electoral deadline since 2012, and as it will do next year in the European elections.

This article is originally published on oumma.com

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