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United Nations: France's burkini ban a 'stupid reaction' to extremism

OHCHR spokesman Rupert Colville says the rights agency wants local officials to \"immediately\" lift the bans.

Published: 30th August 2016 03:49 PM  |   Last Updated: 30th August 2016 03:49 PM   |  A+A-

France Beachwear_Madh

File photo made from video, Nissrine Samali, 20, gets into the sea wearing traditional Islamic dress, in Marseille, southern France. The French resort of Cannes has banned full-body, head-covering swimsuits worn by some Muslim women from its beaches, citi

By AP

GENEVA: The U.N. human rights office says local bans in France on burkini swimwear amount to "a grave and illegal breach of fundamental freedoms" and a "stupid reaction" to recent extremist attacks.

OHCHR spokesman Rupert Colville says the rights agency wants local officials to "immediately" lift the bans, saying they don't increase security.

A French high court has struck down on French town's ban on the burkini, effectively invalidating such bans in about 30 towns, though many remain.

Colville says such bans "fuel religious intolerance and the stigmatization of Muslims," and "have only succeeded in increasing tensions."

He said people who wear burkinis — body-covering beachwear worn by some Muslim women — or any another clothing "cannot be blamed for the violent or hostile reactions of others."



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