Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Zambian President Michael Sata dies aged 77

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Winter is coming: Russia and Ukraine reach gas deal

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Will 'Evil Clowns' disrupt French Halloween?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Why Burkina Faso matters

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#IKEAgate?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Undiplomatic language

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Palestinian territories: Can there be an end to the historic conflict? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Palestinian territories: Can there be an end to the historic conflict?

Read more

FOCUS

Lebanon: Syrian civil war spillover heightens tensions in Tripoli

Read more

An in-depth report by our senior reporters and team of correspondents from around the world. Every Saturday at 8.40 pm Paris time.

REPORTERS

REPORTERS

Latest update : 2011-04-18

Muslims in France

Islam has become a hot-button issue in France. In this country which is officially secular, the French are increasingly confronted with the following question: what is Islam’s place in France? The debate rages on as the next presidential election gets closer. France 24 went to find out more about the Muslims of France.

Muslims in France? Or Muslims of France? These two questions aim to understand just who these French citizens are. With the current debate on “laïcité” (France’s particular conception of secularism), plus the law banning the full-face veil in public coming into force, Muslims are making headlines at the moment. I went out there to meet them.

What I discovered was a tense community; people who have had enough of the media and politicians. In order to shoot this report I met various members of the Muslim community. But I also came up against many refusals to be interviewed, due to people being wary of the media. For those I contacted, the press does not show the true nature of Islam. It is true that it is difficult in a 12-minute report to describe a religion which concerns 4 to 6 million people in France, but of whom only 800,000 are practising Muslims. In turn, there are only 2,000 places where they can pray, a third of the number necessary.

What Muslims want today is to be no longer stigmatised and used as political pawns. With this report, mainly filmed in the outlying suburbs of Paris, in Evry and Meaux, I tried to show how being both French and Muslim could sometimes be difficult. Street prayers, a rise in radicalism, and the full-face veil are just some stigma of a religion which in its great majority observes its faith peacefully.

Caught in the middle between ardent defenders of “laïcité”, and political rows, Muslims want to fully exist in the French republic.

By Rabah ZANOUN

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2014-10-24 Spain

Why does Catalonia want to leave Spain?

On November 9, 2014, Catalans were due to vote in a referendum on independence. But the poll was cancelled by the Constitutional Court after Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s...

Read more

2014-10-17 Uruguay

Uruguay: President Mujica’s social revolution

By legalising both gay marriage and abortion, and decriminalising cannabis, Uruguay has become a real-life social laboratory in Latin America over recent years. The architect of...

Read more

2014-10-10 Haiti

Haiti: Injustice in a time of Cholera

FRANCE 24 reports on the UN’s role in the worst cholera outbreak in modern times. We shine a light on the lack of compassion shown towards the victims of Haiti’s cholera epidemic...

Read more

2014-09-30 Syria

Video: Syrian student risks her life to film IS group stronghold

FRANCE 24 has obtained rare footage secretly shot by a female student in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, the stronghold of the Islamic State group in Syria.

Read more

2014-09-26 Russia

Video: Crimea's 'Russification' in full swing

Changing nationalities isn’t always easy. Six months ago, in Crimea, people voted overwhelmingly to join Russia, in a referendum that Western powers deemed illegal. Now, the...

Read more