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France’s latest vote to ban hijabs shows how far it will go to exclude Muslim women

By Rokhaya Diallo

21 Apr 2021 · 3 min read

"France, the world is watching," Muslim American Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., posted on Instagram recently, with a video of herself wearing her religious head covering along with the viral hashtag #handsoffmyhijab. The hashtag, created by American Muslim women to support their French counterparts, spawned millions of videos on TikTok after France's senate voted to ban children under the age of 18 and mothers who accompanied them on school trips from wearing the hijab, and to ban burkinis at swimming pools.

This global movement came in stark contrast to the silence of prominent French voices, who have said little about the new provisions that are part of a law designed to fight the "separatism" that is supposedly threatening France.

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