France Bans Foreign Imams and Islamic Teachers
French President Emmanuel Macron announces strict new measures to fight 'political Islam'
France is banning foreign imams and Islamic teachers from entering the country as the government seeks to crack down on rising "political Islam," according to reports.
French President Emmanuel Macron announced that his administration is restricting other countries from sending imams and Islamic teachers to France.
Macron said the move is an attempt to prevent separatism from growing in France.
During a press conference in Mulhouse, eastern France, Macron vowed to end the system in which Algeria or Morocco send imams to preach in local French mosques.
The practice has seen 300 imams travel to the country every year.
Imams will no longer enter France in such numbers, Macron warned.
The French government has already asked an organization for Muslims in France to find a way to train imams in French territory to ensure that they speak French and do not spread Islamist views, according to Remix News.
Macron has also announced that French students will no longer be taught by teachers paid by foreign governments.
France has agreements with nine countries whereby their governments can send teachers to French schools to teach languages to students with roots in these countries that include, for example, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, and Turkey.
Macron said he agreed with all the countries, except Turkey, to end this practice.
“I won’t let any country, whatever it is, feed separatism,” the French president was quoted in Reuters.
“You can’t have Turkish law on French soil. That can’t be,” added Macron.
France has experienced several major attacks by Islamists in recent years.
In November 2015, 130 people were killed in the attacks in the Bataclan Theater and other locations in the French capital.
These were the deadliest attacks in France since the end of the Second World War.
In addition, there are fears that Islam may be encroaching on France’s traditionally secular society and imposing different cultural norms, creating the parallel societies Macron believes are leading to separatist enclaves on French soil.
In November, as Neon Nettle previously reported, the French government has started shutting down mosques, schools, and other Islamic establishments in a major nationwide crackdown on "political Islam" in France.
French authorities closed down over 150 closed associations linked to the proliferation of radical Islamist political ideology across fifteen districts throughout France.
By the end of 2019, the government had shut down 129 drinking establishments, 12 mosques, four schools, and nine other associations with links to "political Islam and communitarianism," France's Secretary of State for the Interior Laurent Nuñez announced.
“We fight against political Islamism that suggests that the law of God is superior to that of the Republic,” Nuñez warned as he spoke to members of the French press.
"'Political Islamism' should never be confused with religious Islam," he added.
The Interior Ministry told AFP that these closures are part of "a comprehensive plan to fight against political Islamism."