Al-Qaeda chief blasts French'crusader' ban on Islamic veil

24th February 2004, Comments 0 comments

DUBAI, Feb 24 (AFP) - A French law banning Muslim headscarves in schools betrays the "grudge" the West has against Islam, an inflammatory recording attributed to the Al-Qaeda number two by al-Arabiya television said Tuesday.

DUBAI, Feb 24 (AFP) - A French law banning Muslim headscarves in schools betrays the "grudge" the West has against Islam, an inflammatory recording attributed to the Al-Qaeda number two by al-Arabiya television said Tuesday.

"The latest decision by the French president (Jacques Chirac) to ban Muslims from covering their heads at school shows once again the grudge the western crusaders have against Islam," the terror network's Ayman al-Zawahiri reportedly said.

 "The headscarf ban in France falls in the same category as the torching of villages and their inhabitants in Afghanistan, the destruction of houses over the heads of their occupants in Palestine, the massacre of children and the theft of oil in Iraq.

"The headscarf ban is not restricted to France, but a policy implemented by the crusader-Zionists through their agents in Egypt, Turkey, Tunisia and elsewhere in the countries of Islam," said the voice attributed to Zawahiri, an Egyptian considered to be the deputy to Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.said.

France's move to prohibit the hijab or headscarf and other overt religious insignia, such as the Jewish kippa or skullcap and large Christian crosses, in state schools has been slammed by civil rights groups and Muslims around the world, as well as by the Catholic Church.

The legislation, which passed its first parliamentary hurdle on February 10 and is will be examined by the French senate on March 2, looks certain to sail through parliament and come into force in time for the start of the new school year in September.

Dubai-based al-Arabiya did not say how it obtained the audiotape or how it was authenticated.

© AFP

                                                              Subject: France news

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