PARIS – Reflecting a worrying curve in anti-Islam attacks in France, a pregnant Muslim woman has lost her baby after being attacked by two skinheads for donning Islamic face-veil.
“Her husband called me this afternoon. She lost the baby,” lawyer Hosni Maati told Agence France-Presse (AFP) on Tuesday, June 18.
The 21-year-old woman was attacked last week by two skinheads while walking in the Paris suburb of Argenteuil for wearing a face-veil.
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The Muslim victim told police she was set upon on Thursday, July 13, by two men in middle of the street, just after she had finished talking to her mother on the telephone.
She said the two men ripped the veil from her head and tore part of her clothing.
The woman had also been kicked in the midriff before she fled, said Yves Jannier, the prosecutor for Pointoise.
The attack came three weeks after a veiled Muslim woman in Argenteuil was targeted in a similar manner.
Last week, police also invited anger of Muslims in the neighborhood after attempting to arrest a woman for wearing the face-veil.
France banned the wearing of face-veil, or niqab, in public places in 2011.
Offenders are fined 150 euros ($189) or required to take part in a citizenship class.
People who force women to wear a face-veil risk up to a year in prison and a fine of $41,000.
It came after the European country banned the wearing of hijab, an obligatory code of dress in Islam, in 2004.
The miscarriage of the Muslim woman has drawn condemnation in the European country.
“The wave of attacks and Islamophobic incidents requires a strong and uncompromising response from the government, which must express its solidarity with all victims, not just those which the interior minister deems worthy to receive," the Coalition against Racism and Islamophobia said in a statement cited by AFP.
It expressed “condolences and solidarity to the family” and its “concern and great anger over the tragedy”.
French Muslims, estimated at nearly six million, have long complained of rising discrimination and hostile sentiments in the European country.
A recent IFOP poll found that almost half of French see Muslims as a threat to their national identity.
French Muslims have complained of restrictions on building mosques to perform their daily prayers.
The French government also outlawed Muslim street prayers, a sight Le Pen likened to the Nazi occupation.
Amnesty International has criticized France and a number of European countries as Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland for discriminating against their Muslim minorities.The London-based group said several European countries have made policy decisions in recent years that discriminate against their Muslim citizens, citing bans on face-veils and other religious symbols in schools as being among the most damaging measures.
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