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French Muslim Student Files Complaint with UN for Discrimination over Kimono Ban

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Muslim Student Files Discrimination Complaint for Being Refused Entry to French School for Wearing Kimono

A 15-year-old Muslim student from Lyon, France, has lodged a complaint with the United Nations against a school that denied her entry for wearing a traditional Japanese kimono. The student alleges discrimination based on her religious affiliation, as the country has also banned long dresses known as abayas.

Controversy over French Government’s Stance on Hijab and Baggy Clothes

The French government’s opposition to the hijab in schools has generated ongoing controversy. Many students are turned away for wearing baggy clothing, leading to further debate on the topic.

Complaint Sent to United Nations

Through her lawyer, Nabil Boodi, the student submitted her complaint to Ashwini KP, the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance. She detailed the discrimination she experienced due to her religious affiliation and being instructed to wear a kimono on September 5.

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Criticism of Abaya Ban and French Government’s Response

The complainant criticized the abaya ban imposed by French Education Minister Gabriel Attal for failing to adequately address discrimination against women. Additionally, the student had previously filed a complaint with the Lyon Public Prosecutor’s Office, alleging discrimination based on her religious affiliation.

Council of State Upholds Abaya Ban

The Council of State recently upheld the government’s ban on abayas, deeming it legal. This decision followed an appeal by Vincent Bringarth, a lawyer representing Action for Muslim Rights (ADM), who argued that the ban violated fundamental principles and freedoms.

Backlash Against French Government

The controversial abaya ban has sparked widespread criticism of the French government. In recent years, the government has faced backlash for targeting Muslims through statements, policies, mosque and charity raids, and the introduction of an “anti-separatism” law that imposes extensive restrictions on the Muslim community.

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