- Those in favor of the burkini argue that women should be allowed to wear whatever they choose. Critics of the garment say it is an Islamic religious and political symbol which impedes integration and is incompatible with the liberal principles of secularism and gender equality. In recent months, the debate has added another dimension: public health and hygiene.
- “Secularism and religion are irrelevant here. The burkini is not a Koranic prescription, but another manifestation of political Islam, militant, destructive, seeking to question our way of life, our culture, our civilization.” — French commentator Yves Thréard in Le Figaro.
- Europe’s burkini debate has now spread to the Middle East. In Algeria, thousands of women have joined a “bikini revolt” to reclaim the public space from Islamists who oppose the bikini as a symbol of Western values.
A woman who wore a burkini to swim in a pool in southern France has been charged €490 ($580) to pay for cleaning costs at the facility. The incident, which sparked accusations of Islamophobia, is the latest salvo in an ongoing debate over Islamic dress codes in France and other secular European states.