Thursday, August 13, 2009

After Burqa, Burqini in french line of fire

Assalaam'aaleykum!

PARIS — A Paris swimming pool has refused entry to a young Muslim woman wearing a "burqini," a swimsuit covering most of the body, officials said Wednesday, adding to tensions over Muslim dress in France.

The incident came as French lawmakers conduct hearings on whether to ban the burqa after President Nicolas Sarkozy said the head-to-toe body covering and veil was "not welcome" in France, home to Europe's biggest Muslim minority.

Officials in the Paris suburb of Emerainville said they let the woman swim in the pool in July wearing the "burqini," designed for Muslim women who want to swim without revealing their bodies.

But when she returned in August, they decided to apply hygiene rules and told her she could not swim if she insisted on wearing the garment, which resembles a wetsuit with built-in hood.

Pool staff "reminded her of the rules that apply in all (public) swimming pools which forbid swimming while clothed," said Daniel Guillaume, an official with the pool management.

Le Parisien newspaper said the woman, identified by her first name Carole, was a French convert to Islam and that she was determined to go to the courts to challenge the decision.

"Quite simply, this is segregation," the newspaper quoted her as saying. "I will fight to try to change things. And if I see that the battle is lost, I cannot rule out leaving France."

Continue readeing here.

Stumble Upon Toolbar
blog comments powered by Disqus

Post a Comment