French Muslims Raise Funds to Send Veiled Girls to Private Schools in Sept.

April 11, 2004

Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

On April 11, 2004 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, "Tens of thousands of French Muslims flocked to Le Bourget airport over the weekend to pray, shop--and vent their frustration over a new law banning girls from wearing Muslim headscarves to school. With the ban set to take effect at the start of the next school year in September, the 21st annual gathering of Union of Islamic Organizations of France became a forum for denouncing the measure and raising money to help young Muslim women stay in school. 'We have to start collecting money for September,' Fatma Ajimi, an 18-year-old who was wearing a black robe and head scarf, said Saturday. The funds, she explained, would send girls to private schools where the ban wouldn't apply. Behind her, at the entrance to the cavernous hangar at Le Bourget airport outside Paris where the conference was taking place, a sign read: 'help our sisters excluded from high school.'"