Initially, the bill would contain the term “separatism” used by Emmanuel Macron in a speech in early October. The head of state then denounced “Islamist separatism” but the term “separatism” was abandoned, as was the word “secularism” and he opted for: “A bill meant to strengthen republican principles.”
According to the project, hatred on the Internet becomes a punishment. Specific sanctions are also provided for those who put pressure on state or elected officials. This after learning and proving that Professor Samuel Paty, who was beheaded by a Chechen Islamist on October 16, was first harassed online for showing his students caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in a course on freedom of expression.
There are also two major changes to the penal code. This creates a new crime of “endangering someone’s life by disseminating information about his private life”, family or professional, which could allow his identification or location. The crime can be punished with a maximum of three years in prison and a fine of 45,000 euros.
The new bill creates, in addition to the Paris prosecutor’s office, a group of magistrates who will deal specifically with combating hate on the Internet. The authors of the bill write that “in the face of radical Islam, in the face of all separatism, we have found that our legal arsenal is partly powerless. The Republic does not have the necessary means to act against those who want to destabilize it ».
In order to guarantee the transparency of the conditions in which a cult is practiced, the 1905 law amending the separation of state churches is slightly amended. The focus is on funding, the money that feeds religious associations. Thus, any donation of over 10,000 euros will have to be submitted to a declaration of resources, to the financial department. Financial services will thus know who is financing whom. We specify that in France 380 places of worship, suspected of radicalization, have been closed since 2018 and 475 foreigners illegally in France and registered as radical Islamists have been expelled from the country. Also in this regard, a measure called “anti-coup” is provided to prevent Islamist extremists from taking control of a mosque. In addition, an article stipulates that “a person who has been convicted of incitement to terrorism, discrimination, hatred or violence” may be barred from entering a place of worship, RFI notes.
A chapter on education aims to combat clandestine associative schools. It is desired to put an end to home schooling from the age of three. In this regard, each school-age child, ie from the age of three, will receive an identification number that will allow academic authorities to ensure that no child is deprived of his or her rights to education.
Emmanul Macron’s ultimatum
President Emmanuel Macron and the Minister of the Interior received at the Élysée the federations that make up the French Council of the Muslim Cult to ask them to devise a code of ethics and morals for imams operating in France.
Nine federations make up the French Council of the Muslim Cult, and eight of them were present at the meeting with President Emmanuel Macron and Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin. It is practically the court that has been representing Muslims in France since 2003.
The meeting comes after President Emmanuel Macron has already asked the Council to frame the way in which imams operating in France are trained, given that the Islamist threat is gaining ground.
An advanced proposal by Muslims is the creation of a National Council of Imams that would operate on the model of a professional Order as is the case with lawyers or doctors.
This body will assess the knowledge of future imams and issue them with an official act of imam. And in this project, future imams will have to abide by a code of ethics as well as a charter of republican values.
And this last text will have to be completed in the next 15 days. It will be carried out by the Muslim Worship Council and the Interior Ministry will have to oversee the design of the text. Two principles will be clearly enshrined: the rejection of a possible political Islam and any foreign interference, the Elysée Palace recommends.
This code of ethics, morals and ethics aims to put an end to seconded imams. The Elysée leader admits that not everyone will want to sign the next charter, but either they are with the republic or they are not, concludes President Macron.