A water park in Marseilles, France has become the centre of a country-wide debate after it announced plans for a burkini-only pool day.
The event will be held on September 17 and is being organised by Marseilles-based women’s association Smile13. Women who attend the pool day have been asked to refrain from wearing bikinis and at the very least cover the area between their chests and knees. According to organisers, there will be a male life guard on duty but other males above the age of 10 will not be allowed to attend.
Strong opinions have been voiced on both ends of the political spectrum about the event, with some criticising the Muslim community for attempting to segregate themselves from the rest of the population – and others denouncing the criticism as Islamophobia.
France became the first European country to ban face-coverings in public in 2011 and anti-Islam attitudes have intensified after multiple murderous attacks by ISIS-inspired Muslim extremists. – Ariana Norton