Keyword: coucillors

When France's laws on secularism don't apply to all

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Conservative councillors attending Catholic ceremonies in Lourdes wearing their official sashes. © Facebook Conservative councillors attending Catholic ceremonies in Lourdes wearing their official sashes. © Facebook

The French constitution sets out that "France is an indivisible, secular, democratic and social Republic”, and the country’s strict laws upholding the secular nature of the state and its institutions, including a ban on the wearing of religious dress and symbols in state educational establishments or by public employees, have been at the centre of tensions with members of the Muslim community. But a recent incident involving members of the council of the south-west city of Toulouse demonstrate that for some politicians, the rules of secularity are bendable according to one’s religion. Emmanuel Riondé reports from Toulouse.