France’s lower house of Parliament votes on a proposed ban on face-covering veils. It’s likely to become law, but may not survive a court challenge: Religious freedom, women’s rights and fears of anti-Islamic sentiment.


  • Akbar Ahmed chair of Islamic studies at American University
  • Jonathan Laurence associate professor of Political Science at Boston College. and non-resident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution author of "Integrating Islam: Political and Religious Challenges in Contemporary France (Brookings Press" and soon to be published: "The Partial Emancipation of Europe's Muslim Minorities and the Geopolitics of Islam in the West"
  • Merve Kavakci former member of the Turkish parliament author of a forthcoming book: "Headscarf Politics in Turkey: A Postcolonial Reading"
  • Emmanuel Lenain spokesman, Embassy of France
  • Asra Nomani former correspondent for the Wall Street Journal author of "Standing Alone: An American Woman’s Struggle for the Soul of Islam.”

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