Women Asked to Remove Headscarves at Some French Airports
Some French airports have begun to ask headscarf-wearing women to take off their scarves for security reasons, which has spurred criticism from Muslims in the country, who find the practice a discriminatory one.
The Collective Against Islamophobia in France (CCIF) has announced that Nantes Atlantique Airport has made it obligatory for headscarf-wearing women to take off their scarves and place them in the X-ray machine along with their other belongings.
The practice was put into effect two weeks ago by the SGA, the company responsible for Nantes Atlantique Airport’s security. Women affected by the new rules requested that they be allowed to take off their headscarves in a special room staffed only by women, but the request was denied. The women were told that they must place their headscarves on the conveyor going through the X-ray machine if they wanted to avoid missing their plane.
The SGA defended their actions, claiming that dangerous materials could be hidden under the headscarves, which has triggered outrage in France’s Muslim community.
According to EU airport security regulations, security staff do not have the authority to ask women to take their headscarves off.