Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Weiner strikes again

Read more

THE DEBATE

Colombia's Path to Peace: Can historic deal with FARC rebels work? (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

Colombia's Path to Peace: Can historic deal with FARC rebels work? (part 2)

Read more

FOCUS

The rise of political tourism in the Middle East

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: Video Music Awards, Rock en Seine and Puppa Lek Sen

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

The Gulf of Porto, a paradise of land and sea

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Quarterback takes a stand by sitting down

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

The hidden secrets of Les Invalides

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Anger over restaurant's decision to deny service to Muslim women

Read more

France

Sarkozy calls burqa ban bill a 'moral' choice

Text by FRANCE 24 (with wires)

Latest update : 2010-05-19

French President Nicolas Sarkzoy has defended a draft government bill to ban full Islamic veils such as the burqa or niqab in France as a "conscientious" and moral choice, despite warnings from a top legal body that a ban may be unconstitutional.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his cabinet ministers discussed on Wednesday a draft bill aiming to ban the full Islamic veil in France, despite warnings from a top judicial body that banning the burqa and niqab could be unconstitutional.

"talking points" on France 24
The text, drafted by Justice Minister Michèle Alliot-Marie, would make it illegal for anyone in France to wear an “item of clothing that hides their face” in the street or any space open to the public.
 
Sarkozy called the decision to opt for a total rather than a partial ban of the burqa “demanding” but “fair”, saying he and his ministers made a moral, “conscientious” choice.
 
“It is the government’s and parliament’s responsibility to decide in what kind of society we want to live, and with what human values,” Sarkozy told his cabinet.
 
“In turn, the relevant judiciary authorities will have to reach their own decision according to their conscience and their vision of what human rights in our Republic stand for,” added the president, addressing concerns that the bill could be challenged and ultimately derailed in court.
 
But in March, France's State Council, a top judicial body, warned that a total ban of the veil in all public spaces may be unconstitutional.
 
The bill is set to go before parliament in July where it is expected to face some resistance from the Socialist opposition, which is calling on the government to limit the ban to official government offices and state institutions such as schools and hospitals.

Date created : 2010-05-19

  • FRANCE

    Wearing full Islamic veil could land women in 'citizenship' school

    Read more

  • ITALY

    Police fine woman 500 euros for wearing burqa in the street

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Top legal body says law banning burqa could be challenged

    Read more

COMMENT(S)