France backs hate expulsion law

The French authorities could soon be able to expel foreigners for inciting discrimination against women.

The upper house of parliament has approved legislation that would allow a clamp down on people encouraging hatred or violence against women.

The law came after the authorities suffered a setback in their efforts to deport radical Algerian Islamic cleric Abdelkader Bouziane.

Mr Bouziane was accused of publicly justifying wife-beating in an article.

Presidential concern

Under the new legislation foreigners can be expelled for “inciting discrimination, hatred or violence against a specific person or group of persons”.

The 52-year-old Algerian preacher returned to France last month, after a court ruled that his deportation had been illegal.

He preaches at a mosque in a suburb of Lyon.

The cleric was deported to Algeria on 21 April for saying that the Koran authorised the stoning and beating of adulterous women.

The remarks caused an outcry in France, with many Muslim leaders condemning them as un-Islamic.

But two tribunals have ruled the deportation illegal and said Mr Bouziane should be allowed to return to France.

French President Jacques Chirac had said that if the law needed to be changed to prevent a repetition of the Bouziane saga, then modifications would be made.

The legislation was approved by the lower house last month.


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July 16, 2004

Religion News Blog posted this on Friday July 16, 2004.
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