Video Re-broadcast of Islamophobia in France

11 Apr 2022


French citizens will be heading to the polls in April 2022 to vote for the country’s next president. Islamophobia appears to be a running theme throughout the views of many of the candidates, including current President Emmanuel Macron, centrist candidate Valérie Pécresse and far-right contenders Marine Le Pen and Éric Zemmour.

Over the last few years, French Muslims have found themselves on the receiving end of government legislation that has resulted in widespread discrimination. The effects of such policies have resulted in the criminalization of French Muslim civil society and curtailed the human rights of French Muslims, especially women. Last year, the French government adopted Macron’s anti-separatism bill, which several human rights organizations have criticized as problematic, as it targets and “casts generalized suspicion against people of the Muslim faith,” and “indirectly suggests a link between this group and foreign or terrorist threats.” Further, Macron’s government dissolved the leading anti-Islamophobia organization in France in addition to shutting down a number of mosques and Muslim organizations. Additionally, there’s been increasingly hostile rhetoric coming from the country's leaders essentially rendering French Muslims as untrustworthy second-class citizens.

Scholars, commentators, and writers have all noted how the current political climate in France has involved a surge in the far-right and an overall massive shift right-ward in the country. As the election campaign wages on, many of the candidates are instrumentalizing anti-Muslim bigotry to gain votes. Join the Bridge Initiative as we speak with leading scholars and activists to understand where France is headed and what all of this means for French Muslims.


Rim-Sarah Alouane is a French legal scholar. As a Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Law at the University Toulouse-Capitole in France, her research focuses on religious freedom, civil liberties,constitutional law and human rights in Europe and North America. Ms. Alouane frequently appears on TV and radio in America and worldwide, including NPR, Al Jazeera, BBC, and France24 where she discusses discrimination, human rights violations and politics.

Twitter: @rimsarah

Marwan Muhammad is a French-Egyptian author and statistician. After a career in finance, he dedicated the last 12 years to the fight against Islamophobia. He was the spokesman and then the director of the Collective Against Islamophobia in France (CCIF), the most prominent human rights NGO in France supporting Muslims, before becoming a diplomat for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), where he supported Muslim communities all across Europe, Central Asia and North America. In 2018, he conducted the first survey of Muslims in France (in which 27,000 took part), before founding the Muslims’ Platform, an umbrella organization gathering hundreds of Mosques and Islamic organizations across France, with more than 75 000 supporters. He now works as a Human Rights consultant for International Organizations.

Twitter: @_MarwanMuhammad

Dr. Alain Gabon is Associate Professor of French Studies at Virginia Wesleyan University in Virginia Beach, USA. He has written and lectured widely in the U.S., Europe and beyond on contemporary French culture, politics, literature and the arts and more recently on geopolitics, Islam and Muslims in France and Europe. His work has appeared in academic journals, think tanks, and mainstream and specialized media such as Saphirnews, Milestones: Commentaries on the Islamic World, the Middle East Eye, and Les Cahiers de l'Islam.

Mobashra Tazamal is Senior Research Fellow for The Bridge Initiative and received her Master’s degree in Islamic Societies & Cultures from SOAS University of London. Her current research centers on global Islamophobia with a particular focus on China’s campaign targeting Uighur Muslims and its use of surveillance technology, the rise of ethno-nationalism, and the financial and trans-Atlantic connections of the Islamophobia “industry.” Her work has been published in Al-Jazeera, Middle East Eye, Religious Response, & The New Arab. She has previous experience in human rights advocacy and immigration law.

Event Date: 
Monday, April 11, 2022 - 11:15pm to Saturday, April 30, 2022 - 11:15pm