As France’s political climate becomes more hostile to Muslims, various initiatives by the community aim to make their voices recognized.
Starting a platform committed to combating chronic Islamophobia in France is not without difficulties.
That hasn’t prevented Rafik Chekkat, a former lawyer turned writer, activist, and animator, from launching ‘Islamophobia,’ an organization intended at serving as a resource hub.
“Our objectives are multiple,” says Chekkat speaking to TRT World.
To do this, we must grasp Islamophobia in all its dimensions: political, religious, social, economic, psychological – and deploy our discourse on all media, including podcasts, videos, and magazines, in order to reach the widest possible audience,” added Chekkat.
Recently, the French Senate voted to prohibit prominent religious symbols in sports. This rule is primarily directed at the country’s Muslim women, some of whom may participate in sports while wearing a headscarf.
Against this backdrop, the Muslim community’s challenges are “immense”, says Chekkat.
Over the last few years, French President Emmanuel Macron has gradually increased his government’s anti-Muslim policies. Closing Muslim schools, mosques, Islamic charities, groups monitoring Islamophobia, publishing companies, and even pressing mosques to sign a charter were all part of these policies. The charter forbids talking about discrimination and racism faced by the community.
The new body that the government aims to replace CFCM with will be called the “forum of Islam in France,” which held its first session earlier this month.
Macron’s right-wing Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin wants the new body to remain uninfluenced by foreign governments and to show an active commitment to the state ideology of secularism.
“The presidential election is an opportunity for a headlong rush into racist, and security escalation,”, by the country’s politicians seeking to show they are tough on Islam and Muslims says Chekkat.
Source: News Channel