France's highest administrative court says the soccer federation can ban headscarves in matches

The Council of State issued its ruling after a collective of headscarf-wearing soccer players called "Les Hijabeuses" campaigned against the ban and launched legal action.
Image used for representational purpose only. (File Photo)
Image used for representational purpose only. (File Photo)

PARIS: France's highest administrative jurisdiction said Thursday that the country's soccer federation is entitled to ban headscarves in matches.

The Council of State issued its ruling after a collective of headscarf-wearing soccer players called "Les Hijabeuses" - the word hijab refers to the headscarf - campaigned against the ban and launched legal action.

The French soccer federation bans women from wearing headscarves in official matches, as well as at competitions it organizes.

It's not in line with the recommendations of the soccer governing body FIFA, which authorizes players to compete at an international level with headscarves.

The Council of State said "sports federations may impose on their players an obligation to wear neutral clothing during sporting competitions and events, in order to guarantee the smooth running of matches and prevent clashes or confrontation. It considers that the ban imposed by the FFF is appropriate and proportionate."

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