Muslim woman barred from wearing 'burquini' in Paris pool

August 12, 2009 19:16

A Muslim woman who tried to go swimming in a head-to-toe swimsuit dubbed a "burquini" has been banned from her local pool in the latest tussle between religious practices and secular authority in France. Officials on Wednesday insisted they banned the woman's use of the Islam-friendly suit because of France's unusually strict hygiene standards in pools - not because of official hostility to wearing overtly Muslim garb. Under the policy, swimmers are prevented from wearing any street-compatible or baggy clothing, such as Bermuda shorts, in favor of figure-hugging suits. Nonetheless the woman, a 35-year-old convert to Islam identified only as Carole, complained of religious discrimination after trying to go swimming in a "burquini," a a full-body swimsuit, in the Paris suburb of Emerainville.

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