June 7, 2016
A Muslim waitress says she was verbally abused and physically attacked by two men who accused her of shaming Islam by serving alcohol during Ramadan.
The woman, who is in her 30s, said she was working in a bar in Nice on the first day of the holy month of fasting when the attack happened.
“I was all alone in the bar when two bystanders stormed in,” said the waitress, who did not want to be named.
“They pointed to the bottles of alcohol behind the counter, and then one of them said in Arabic. ‘You shame on serving alcohol during Ramadan. If I were God, I would have you hanged’.” She said she stood up to the men, telling them: “You are not God to judge me.”
She said they responded by calling her a “prostitute” and a “bitch”, before leaving the bar.
Shortly after, she said one of the men returned and hit her, causing her to fall to the ground.
“I was so scared,” she said. “I couldn’t understand. Why have they insulted me? Why that slap? I felt belittled, humiliated, dirty. I do not want other women to be victims of such aggression.
“It’s not because I serve alcohol that I do not fulfill my duty. I do it because I’m a waitress. In Tunisia I was practicing the same profession and I never had any problems.
“I did not think in France, a country of freedoms, I could be attacked for this. I fear they will come back, but I do not want this to impact my work,” she told the paper.
Fortunately the incident was caught on camera. The manager, who is also not named in the report, said: “Around 12:30, she called me in tears. I immediately went to the site. I alerted the police who arrived on the scene very quickly.
“The whole scene was recorded by CCTV cameras, and I have passed it on to the authorities.”