The French National Assembly has approved legislation to combat Islamist extremism in the country whilst some circles have criticized the bill as “a continuation of Islamophobia”. The bill will go to the Senate next month for final approval.
The bill was approved with 347 votes in favour, 151 against, and 65 abstentions. It was proposed following the killing of the school teacher Samuel Paty – who was beheaded by an Islamist fanatic in October 2020 – and presented to parliament on the 115th anniversary of the law that enshrined the separation of state and religion in France.
The bill contains 51 articles that seek to limit the avenues that may lead to ‘radicalization’. It bans the “virginity certificates”, provided by some doctors for Islamic religious marriages. Doctors would be fined and risk jail for providing virginity certificates.
The proposed law also seeks to halt the practice of polygamy and forced marriage and introduces limits on home-schooling and requires all children from three years of age to attend a regular school to protect children from indoctrination.
In order to block the transfer of funds from countries such as Turkey, Qatar or Saudi Arabia to Islamic organisations in the country, the bill proposes to ask for official declarations and certified bank accounts for donations over 10,000 Euro.