Is Macron marginalising France's Muslims?
Critics say the French president's new law is against the spirit of laïcité, secularism
French President Emmanuel Macron has described Islam as 'a religion in crisis.' This week he presented draft legislation to cabinet ministers aimed at tackling radical elements and propping up ‘republican values’. Among the proposed measures are curbs on foreign funding for mosques and imams, new rules making it harder for children to be home-schooled, and fresh attempts to root out and prevent forced marriages. While the government has planned the policies for some time, it is publishing details just weeks after a pair of deadly terrorist attacks, including the beheading of a history teacher - Samuel Paty - who showed cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed to his students, and the killing of three churchgoers in Nice. But with the French presidential election less than 18-months away - and with the far-right politician Marine Le Pen thought to be one of Mr Macron’s greatest obstacles to re-election - many French Muslims have accused the government of unfairly targeting their community and using the national tradition of laïcité - or secularism - as an excuse to do so. France’s Muslim population has grown significantly since Algerian independence in 1962, as has the debate over ‘French values’. So are Muslims now being exploited for political gain, or are the new proposals a common-sense response to serious problems? Ritula Shah and guests discuss whether the French government is marginalising Muslims.
Rim-Sarah Alouane - French human rights researcher, University of Toulouse
Bruno Bonnell - MP for governing La République En Marche! party
Philippe Marliere - Professor of French and European Politics at University College London
Also featuring ...
Liam Duffy - consultant, Counter Extremism Project
- Fri 11 Dec 2020 10:06GMT
- Sat 12 Dec 2020 00:06GMT