Scrolling news:

French court confirms dissolution of anti-Islamophobia body

29th Oct 2021
French court confirms dissolution of anti-Islamophobia body

Photo: Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin ordered the closure of CCIF by decree last year.
(Credit: Jacques Paquier/FlickrCommons)

Harun Nasrullah

France’s top administrative court approved the Government’s dissolution of the Collective against Islamophobia in France (Collectif contre l’islamophobie en France), an anti-Islamophobia group.

Founded in 2003, the CCIF assists Muslims facing discrimination and documents the discriminatory impact of France’s counterterrorism measures on Muslims. The dissolution of CCIF in December 2020 was part of a broader crackdown by French authorities in response to attacks attributed to Muslim extremists.

A controversial law intended to “fight against separatism and attacks on [French] citizenship” was adopted last August, prompting concerns from France’s national human rights commission and the European Commission. On December 2, 2020, Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin tweeted that the Council of Ministers had notified CCIF that it was being dissolved by decree.

Reacting to the Council of State verdict delivered on September 24, a spokesman for CCIF branded the ruling “a major turning point in the institutionalisation of harsh, repressive politics in France.

“We express our deep concern about a decision that paves the way for making ‘opinion’ an offence now prompted by the highest administrative court in France. The grounds put forward by the Council of State’s decision against the CCIF carries out a direct attack on what constitutes the heart of our work as a human rights organisation – advocacy towards governments and institutions.

“The Council of State found after a hearing that lasted no more than 10 minutes that the only and main grievance to be held against the CCIF is its definition of institutional Islamophobia. The grievances alleged by the Ministry of the Interior, in particular, that of an apology for terrorism, were swept away.

“The CCIF was directly criticised for denouncing Islamophobia among public institutions and the administration. For the Council of State, that is enough to constitute an incitement to hatred which would go beyond the protection of freedom of expression.”

Eva Cossé, Human Rights Watch Western Europe researcher, said the Council of State’s decision “seriously damages the country’s self-proclaimed reputation as a champion of freedom of expression and association.”

In its judgment, the court said that CCIF’s denunciation of France’s hostility toward Muslims in its fight against terrorism, as well as the group’s failure to “moderate” third parties’ anti-Semitic and other hostile comments in response to CCIF social media posts, constitute an incitement to discrimination, hatred, and violence, justifying the decision to close it down.

The court also accepted disputed allegations that CCIF maintained close links with supporters of “radical Islamism,” including through its former executive director.

“Under international and European human rights law, states can only interfere with rights to freedom of association, freedom of religion and belief, and freedom of expression when such interference has a lawful basis is necessary and proportionate.

Dissolving an independent organisation should be a measure of last resort should it advocates a clear, imminent threat of violence or has acted in grave violation of the law. The Council of State rejected all other arguments by the French government that CCIF gave rise to such a threat, yet, nevertheless, upheld the decision to close it down,” said Cossé.

She warned CCIF’s closure not only “weakens the country’s” civil rights credentials’ but also “sets a dangerous example for governments quick to use vaguely defined laws to silence critics.

French authorities should stop pushing censorship on civil society organisations and instead demonstrate their commitment to freedom of expression and association, and their determination to fight discrimination.”

The organisation relocated to Belgium’s capital Brussels under a new name, the Collectif contre l’islamophobie en Europe (CCIE).

Leave a Comment

What is 6 + 5 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)

Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

Latest Tweets

Betboo Porno izle Mobile porn hilesi