Activists have caused the closure of a swimming pool in Paris on Sunday after bathing in a burkini. They want access to pools “as Muslim women”
Fifteen activists feminists and Muslims have caused the closure of a swimming pool in Paris Sunday after bathing in a burkini, to protest against the ban on this controversial covering swimsuit.
The small group entered a swimming pool in the 11th district and five Muslim women bathing in a burkini, supported by other feminist activists in one or two-piece suits, but also transgender people and men members of the collective created for the opportunity. “We will bathe, we will bathe! Even if the racists do not want, we will swim! Their militant songs were greeted with glances sometimes amused, sometimes indignant at other swimmers.
They denounce “the rise of Islamophobic ideas”
The punching operation provoked the intervention of the lifeguards, then that of the police, without any trouble. During a brief altercation, a man irritated by the initiative showed his sex to the militants. After about thirty minutes, the management closed the pool and the activists left with a banner with the slogan “swimming for all, stop Islamophobia”.
“The goal is to access the pool as Muslim women who wear the veil,” said Nargesse (without giving her last name), 27, before bathing in a burkini. We want to claim our choice to wear it and be able to continue to have our leisure without being bothered by discriminating regulations, “added the young woman, denouncing” the rise of Islamophobic ideas. ”
A debate that has no place for the government
“It’s important that all women and all people can swim and enjoy,” said Camille, an 18-year-old feminist activist. It’s not because they have a jersey covering that it’s serious or that we have to invoke reasons as we said about hygiene and safety to ban it, which is totally false. ”
In a statement, the group called for “the change of the rules of the swimming pools, and the accessibility to leisure for all”. “Our bodies belong to us, we cover them or discover them for reasons that concern us,” the activists argued.
#Burkini : Sibeth Ndiaye, porte-parole du gouvernement tape du poing sur la table : “Les associations comme celle de Grenoble sont communautaristes et mènent un combat politique. en instrumentalisant le débat” 💥#BourdinDirect
📻 https://t.co/reUuVq4iwt pic.twitter.com/fWJ1jnfpzs
— RMC (@RMCinfo) 2 July 2019
Similar action in Grenoble mid-June had sparked a national controversy. The Prime Minister, Édouard Philippe, had considered that the rules of public swimming pools must be respected, and “that no religious conviction” could be taken into account to derogate from it. The spokesman of the government, Sibeth Ndiaye, she condemned “associations of a communitarian nature” that try to “impose” a debate on the burkini “which has no place”.