Prime Minister Fillon Attends Mosque Opening North of Paris

French Prime Minister Francois Fillon attended the inauguration of a mosque in Argenteuil, a
suburb north of Paris, the first time a head of government has attended such an event. Fillon gave
a speech to the 800 dignitaries in which he denounced violence against Muslims in France. But
he also warned against religious fundamentalism.
Fillon said Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux had signed an agreement with the French Muslim
council (CFCM) which would allow the gathering of statistics of violence committed against
Muslims in France. He also said that he had asked Justice Minister Michèle Alliot-Marie to
increase the number of judges specially trained to fight racism and xenophobia. The mosque
was built for the Al Iihsan Islamic institute of France, on a 5,200-square-meter piece of land.
According to the institute, some 28,000 Muslims live in Argenteuil.

Burqa-wearing woman denied French citizenship

The French government has decided to deny the nationality to a man over allegations that he has forced his French wife to wear the face-veil. “This case is about a religious radical,” said French Prime Minister François Fillon, following Immigration Minister Eric Besson’s admission about the case. “He imposes the burqa, he imposes the separation of men and women in his own home, and he refuses to shake the hands of women,” Fillon added.

It was not clear if the wife was forced to cover her face or it was her choice. The name and nationality of the man was not declared. Justice Minister Michele Alliot-Marie has called for denying Muslim men who force their wives to wear the full veil the citizenship.

Prime Minister Fillon even vowed to expel the man. “If this man does not want to change his attitude, he has no place in our country,” he said.”In any case, he does not deserve French nationality.” In 2008, a court denied a veiled Muslim woman the nationality for being “too submissive” to her husband and that her religious rituals were “incompatible” with French values.