“France wants to legalize Islamophobia”

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ANKARA
France’s bill to protect the values ​​of the republic will legalize Islamophobia, a Paris correspondent for the Anadolu agency said on Monday at a video seminar hosted by the Migration Research Foundation.

As a Parisian and journalist, Yusuf Ozcan noted that the bill targets Muslims in France and would alienate them by restricting their rights and interfering with their beliefs.

If the bill, which was approved by parliament on February 16, is accepted by the Senate, the French government would ban home schooling for Muslims, make formal education compulsory and be able to shut down associations , schools and mosques in the event of a suspicious incident.

Ozcan went on to say that a number of parliamentarians abstained from voting because they found the bill “insufficient”, expecting it to involve tougher interventions such as banning the wearing of the scarf across the country.

Stressing that the increase in the number of Muslims was seen as a threat and a source of concern by far-right politicians, he added that when a Muslim’s visibility increased in social, cultural and political life, his chances of being considered a terrorist increased in France.

A French legal expert, Osman Han, said the bill mainly targets Muslim schools, which had recently increased in number in the country.

“A law should be necessary and proportionate. But there are decisions made by administrative authorities and advisory councils in France that this bill is neither necessary nor proportionate, ”Han said.

He added that with the bill to strengthen the principles of democracy and the republic, lawmakers intended to close Muslim schools and make formal education compulsory for children three years and older.

“The Institution of the French Mediator declares that this bill does not meet the objective of strengthening respect for the principles of the republic”, he added.

The bill will be debated in the Senate on March 30. He is expected to return to the National Assembly after a vote.

It was introduced by President Emmanuel Macron last year to fight so-called “Islamist separatism” and is criticized for targeting the Muslim community and imposing restrictions on almost every aspect of their lives.

It plans to intervene in mosques and associations responsible for their administration as well as to control the finances of associations and non-governmental organizations belonging to Muslims.

The bill also prohibits patients from choosing doctors based on gender for religious or other reasons and makes “secular education” compulsory for all public officials.

The Migration Research Foundation is an Ankara-based organization that conducts and publishes research primarily on migration and the diaspora.
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