Cannes, the emblematic film festival city on the French Riviera, has banned full-bodied ‘burkinis‘ amid recent terrorist acts occurred in Europe.
It is a temporary ban that will only be in action for one month. Noncompliance to the measure will result in a €38 fine, equivalent to $42. Apparently, no one has been fined yet. The new law points out that burkinis show religious affiliation in a very non-discrete manner, and because France localities have been subject to acts of terror, the ban appears as a measure of promoting public order and the safety of the city’s tourists.
A decision with dubious origins
Cannes’ Human Rights League president Hervé Lavisse stated that the ban would not work and that it would instead “inflame tensions,” which is why an administrative court should disregard the law. Lavisse believes that the measure was just a way of making publicity to the city since it has been reported that women on Cannes’ beaches continued to wear burkinis, and authorities have not approached them.
The ban was signed by Mayor David Lisnard, who acknowledged that everyone attending beaches should have the proper bathing apparel in congruence with “good customs and secularism.” Cannes municipal authorities later commented that the ban was only against “ostentatious clothing” that could be linked to an allegiance with terrorist organizations.
It is also worth noting that a ‘burkini day’ was planned in the city of Pennes-Mirabeau, but organizers had to call off the event due to receiving death threats and local mayor announcing a law to prohibit its celebration, arguing that it would cause public disorder due to religious tensions.
France had also initially tried to ban burqas in 2011, but the law was dismissed in 2014 due to a trial where a woman claimed it was a threat to religious freedom.
The reason? Terrorism
Back in July, Nice, a city also located in the French Riviera, saw an attack carried out by the Islamic State, where a truck driver ran through a crowd of people, killing 85 pedestrians in the process on Bastille Day.
France has faced four terrorist attacks in 2016 and six in 2015. It appears that France does not have the right approach to face the imminent terrorist threat, as it disregards the inclusion of religion in public life. Although the country has been declared a state of emergency since last year, the threat of terror is still present, whether it is from sleeping cells or from lone wolves that carry out attacks on their own.
The problem comes from the fact that the acts perpetrated by ISIS are mostly performed by people with few connections to the movement. For instance, the man accounted for the Nice attack was not under surveillance and had no criminal records. Authorities suggest that he was a divorced man who had sunk into depression, something that law enforcement and anti-terrorist organizations cannot pick up even if they perform the sufficient amount of research.
Many fear that France alongside most European countries will take right-wing movements as their next political affiliation, increasing the European Union’s already-criticized isolationist actions towards the rest of the world.
Source: Fox News