IFOP poll suggests French Muslims torn between traditional and modern relationships

According to a recently released IFOP poll, French Muslims are torn between tradition and modernity when it comes to relationships and marriage. Done for an online dating service, the poll found huge opposition to both polygamy and arranged marriages.

The poll suggests that the group’s value system remains “impregnated” with a moral code which views sex as legitimate only within a marriage and which strongly influences marriage partner choices. The poll found that 84% opposed the legalization of polygamy in France, while 83% reject the notion that parents should choose spouses for their children. Roughly three out of four (73%) are against sex outside marriage, while 53% said they were unwilling to marry a non-Muslim.

The telephone poll involved 503 respondents interviewed Nov. 23-24, 2010. The poll’s margin of error is between 1.3 and 4.4 percentage points, according to Ifop.

IFOP poll suggests French Muslims torn between traditional and modern relationships

According to a recently released IFOP poll, French Muslims are torn between tradition and modernity when it comes to relationships and marriage. Done for an online dating service, the poll found huge opposition to both polygamy and arranged marriages.

The poll suggests that the group’s value system remains “impregnated” with a moral code which views sex as legitimate only within a marriage and which strongly influences marriage partner choices. The poll found that 84% opposed the legalization of polygamy in France, while 83% reject the notion that parents should choose spouses for their children. Roughly three out of four (73%) are against sex outside marriage, while 53% said they were unwilling to marry a non-Muslim.

The telephone poll involved 503 respondents interviewed Nov. 23-24, 2010. The poll’s margin of error is between 1.3 and 4.4 percentage points, according to Ifop.

The Lies Hebbadj Affair in France Could Result in Tougher Anti-Polygamy Laws

Lies Hebbadj, the Muslim businessperson in Nantes who has received a great deal of media attention since his wife was fined with a traffic ticket (see: http://www.euro-islam.info/2010/04/26/french-muslim-denies-polygamy-admits-to-mistresses/), has precipitated a new legal proposal to further criminalize polygamy in France (please see the Senate proposal below). Polygamy has been illegal in France since the 1993 Pasqua law; there are approximately 20, 000 polygamous families in the Republic.

Polygamy question in France continues, CFCM weighs in

A French Muslim threatened by the government with being stripped of his passport for practicing polygamy said he had only one wife and several mistresses. The case of Lies Hebbadj, an Algerian-born butcher who became a citizen when he married a French woman in 1999, has flared into a major political debate. The government, which days earlier announced it planned to ban the full veil from the streets of France, said Mr. Hebbadj appeared to have several wives and suggested that he lose his French nationality. But Mr. Hebbadj denied having more than one wife, saying other women he has had children with were his lovers.

The French government has said it has information that Mr. Hebbadj is married to four women with 12 children and accuses them of fraudulently claiming single parent benefits. “If the French consider that fraudulent polygamy and benefit claims shouldn’t be allowed, then … we could well imagine a change to the law,” Immigration Minister Eric Besson told RTL radio, suggesting a tightening of legislation. Frederic Lefebvre, a spokesperson for the ruling UMP party, accused Mr. Hebbadj of being “someone whom we can well suspect of practicing polygamy, which is against the principles of our society, for financial aims.”

The French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) condemned the information dispelled by Mr. Hebbadj who claimed that the tradition of Islam allowed mistresses. The CFCM spokesperson said, they were “Lies about the legality of mistresses in Islam” and “qualified these allegations as offensive and insulting for the Muslim religion.” The organization also reminded French Imams who grant religiously-understood marriage contracts that polygamy in France is illegal.

French Muslim denies polygamy, admits to mistresses

A French Muslim threatened by the government with being stripped of his passport for practicing polygamy had publicly stated he has one wife and several mistresses. The case of Lies Hebbadj, an Algerian-born butcher who became a citizen when he married a French woman in 1999, has flared into a major political row with opposition parties accusing the government of exploiting the situation.

The story came to light on when Mr. Hebbadj’s wife, Anne, complained she had been fined for driving while wearing an Islamic veil, which police said was dangerous. The government, which days earlier announced it planned to ban the full veil from the streets of France, said Mr. Hebbadj appeared to have several wives and suggested that he lose his French nationality.

But Mr. Hebbadj denied having more than one wife, saying other women he has had children with were his lovers. “If one can be stripped of one’s French nationality for having mistresses, then many French could lose theirs,” he said.

A person can see their French passport taken away if they acquired it through fraud – if, for instance, Mr. Hebbadj hid an existing marriage when he married Anne. Mistresses, however, are hardly unusual in France, where former President Francois Mitterrand maintained a hidden, second family for years.

The French government has said it has information that Mr. Hebbadj is married to four women with 12 children and accuses them of fraudulently claiming single parent benefits. Frederic Lefebvre, a spokesman for the ruling UMP party, accused Mr. Hebbadj of being “someone whom we can well suspect of practicing polygamy, which is against the principles of our society, for financial aims.”

Report on Polygamy in France

French think tank the Montaigne Institute recently published this study on polygamy in France, highlighting the dangers for women in these marital arrangements.

This report suggests that 500,000 people are affected by polygamous households, including adults and children. It includes 10 recommendations.

The Pasqua law in 1993 formally prohibited polygamy in France.

Report on polygamy in France

This article chronicles the financially and politically difficult lives of French polygamists of Malian and Senegalese-origins who live in housing projects near Paris. French think tank the Montaigne Institute recently publicized a study conducted on polygamy in France, where they highlight the dangers for women in these marital arrangements. The report suggests that 500,000 people are affected by polygamous households, including adults and children. It includes 10 recommendations. The Pasqua law in 1993 formally prohibited polygamy in France.