From burkinis to banking: Nice mayor takes aim at Islamic finance – POLITICO.eu


Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi speaks after his reelection by the municipal council in April | Yann Coatsaliou/AFP via Getty Images

Sign outside office that says ‘Islamic finance’ a threat to public order, Christian Estrosi says.

Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi courted controversy again after he blocked an insurance company from putting up a sign saying “Islamic finance,” Le Monde reported Friday.

The sign, Estrosi contended, “posed a high risk of disturbances to public order.”

He explained that the ban was for the company’s own protection. It would “endanger both the staff and the customers by the antagonistic gatherings that will occur as soon as they know about such signs in Nice,” he said in a letter dated May 12.

Last year, Nice was one of the towns that banned the burkini, a full body swimsuit, after a terror attack that killed more than 80 people. Estrosi, who was the deputy mayor at the time, wrote “hiding the face or wearing a full-body costume to go to the beach is not in keeping with our ideal of social relations.”

Sonia Mariji, the insurance company’s founder, appealed the ban saying it hindered her freedom to conduct business. “Islamic finance is not incompatible with the republic, I am a product of the republic,” she told Le Monde.

A court is to rule on the ban in the coming weeks.



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