A headscarf-wearing Muslim woman in her final month of pregnancy was violently assaulted in southern France this week by a man who accused her of wearing a hijab to hide her hair.
The 29-year-old woman was hospitalised on Tuesday after being attacked on a street in Toulouse, southern France.
According to her account, the attacker pulled on her veil, grabbed her by the hair and threw her to the ground, where he hit her several times.
Muslim women protest about France’s decision to ban the veil. PHOTO: AFP
The young women lodged a complaint of racist abuse a day after the attack on March 24. She was interviewed by investigators of departmental security at the clinic she is recovering in.
“There is no reason to doubt her word,” said a police source, referring to the possibility of the establishment of a sketch of the attacker who fled.
The victim’s husband, Mounir, 33 said his wife took her two daughters to school when she was attacked.
“One of them grabbed her hair, pulled on her veil while insulting her [saying] ‘None of that in our country’ … He threw a lot of punches… His friend, who was not involved in the violence, told him to stop,” he was quoted as saying by La Depeche du Midi.
In a statement, the Socialist deputy of Haute-Garonne, Christophe Borgel, said “there was no doubt” about “the racist and anti-Muslim character of this aggression”.
“The [French] Republic does not tolerate any racist attack…will not tolerate any aggression because of the religion of one of its citizens,” Borgel wrote.
The spokesperson for the Regional Council of the Muslim Faith (CRCM) in the Midi-Pyrénées, Abdellatif Mellouki, said he had “deep concerns” about “an increase in extremist acts.
While the French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve called the incident “shocking,” saying the law enforcers seeking the attackers.
“No French person can be attacked or threatened based on their origin or religion,” he said in a statement.
The article originally appeared in International Business Times.