France and its Burqa Ban

March 4, 2011 on 11:29 am | In France Travel,, things travelers need to know, travel alert | Comments Off

Last year, the government of France enacted a law banning face coverings, such as the burqa, worn by some Muslim women. After a six month period for conveying information concerning the ban, the law will go into effect on 11 April. CNN has a detailed story about the law and the fines for violating it. Apparently the law bans only face coverings, although there appears to be some confusion about whether it mandates bare heads. A primer on the types of Muslim veils including helpful illustrations can be found in this article at the BBC.

Our interest in this article is to point out that the week of April 11, 2011 may be a touchy time to travel in France, due to the reaction to the ban by various parties. While we have not yet heard of plans for demonstrations, we suspect that these may occur in major cities, although only a small portion of the Muslim population in France wears the burqa. In addition, The North Africa branch of al Qaeda has weighed in indicating that this ban in France and other like it being considered in Spain and Belgium will bring revenge attacks on the countries involved.

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