Leading French figures urge action against Islamophobia

PARIS: Dozens of academics, artists, film directors, actors and journalists urged French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday to condemn a far-right lawmaker who verbally attacked a Muslim woman.

Some 90 academics, actors, journalists call on Macron to condemn lawmaker who verbally harassed Muslim woman

According to an open letter published in the Le Monde daily, 90 people — including actor Omar Sy and journalist Alain Gresh — called on Macron to condemn Julien Odoul, who ordered a Muslim woman to remove her headscarf at a recent regional council meeting.

Stressing that it was unacceptable for people to be subjected to insults and racism due to their religious affiliation, the letter called on the president to take action against the lawmaker’s controversial act.

In addition, it said the far right in France had turned hate towards Muslims into a propaganda tool and underscored that both the right and the left in the country did not refrain from discrimination against Muslim women on the pretext of secularism.

According to the letter, Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer’s past remarks on headscarves proved there was discrimination by top-level state figures.

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