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French Senate votes to ban headscarves during sport competitions

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The French Senate on Tuesday voted to ban headscarves during sport competitions.

In a 160-143 vote, the Senate passed an amendment saying “the wearing of the veil in sports competitions” is prohibited, The Associated Press reported.

“Today, there is legal uncertainty about the wearing of religious symbols, and it is necessary for the state to clearly define the rules,” the amendment says. “If the wearing of the veil is not explicitly forbidden, we could see the emergence of community sports clubs promoting certain religious signs.”

The amendment states people should be freely allowed to practice their religion but shouldn’t outwardly show their differences. 

The amendment could still be removed, as the lower House and Senate need to rectify the differences in the texts between the two before it can be published, according to the AP.

The move follows other rules banning religious symbols in France, including in schools.

French President Emmanuel Macron has made it a point to combat Islamic extremism after recent terror attacks, but many say the country has gone too far. 

It is unclear if the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris would be affected by this amendment. The French soccer federation already banned veils during games, according to the AP. 

Tags Emmanuel Macron Emmanuel Macron French law on secularity and conspicuous religious symbols in schools French President Emmanuel Macron Headscarf Islamic scarf controversy in France

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