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Updated: Jun 5, 2023

The European Union is renowned for its single market, common currency, and collective security. These are the shared principles that unite all of Europe. The nations also have a common trait that involves their hostility towards Islam. Not all European countries, as we say here, are the same, just as not all men are the same. In 2021, a group of Muslim youths in Europe developed a campaign that featured a European woman wearing a headscarf to combat prejudice and advance pluralism. The advertisement emphasized that being free implies having the option to select what to dress. The project focuses on promoting equality and freedom, ideals that Europeans cherish deeply, and combating the societal ill of Islamophobia that has been hurting the continent. The news that the French government thought the campaign offensive at the time confused me. As a result, the Council of Europe, an intergovernmental human rights group that promoted the campaign, ultimately bowed to French concerns and took down the campaign-related tweets. This event from 2021 is just one of several examples showing how the hijab and other overt displays of Muslim religiosity make the French uncomfortable and hostile. Many people in the Republic have considered Islam and its activities to be incompatible with the secular values of the nation. Frequently, Muslim women and the hijab have been singled out for this indignation by French politicians and media pundits who claim that Islam and Muslim identity expressions are incompatible with French culture.

Almost 25 million Muslims live in the 28-member European Union. Due to misconceptions and preconceived notions about European Muslims, who are seen as a "threat" to European societies and their domestic security due to an upsurge in radical activities and attacks by a fringe minority, the majority of individuals there have ended up jobless. The vast majority of Muslims live and support peace, but the fact that these attacks were carried out by so-called "Muslims" fuels Islamophobia, and it is also clear that non-Muslims were responsible for terrorist acts in Europe. It is not just about the misconception notion but also about the ideologies of political parties and orthodox practices that the union has followed over the years. Europe is not new to mass killings and brutal treatment of humans as Europe has given us a taste of what mass killings are. In open spaces, veils were outlawed in France in 2011. One of the most divisive pieces of legislation in French history, the "anti-separatism law," was adopted by the country's highest authorities in August 2021. This law, which targets the more than 3 million Muslims living in France, gave the French government greater control over religious freedom. The "Take up arms against terrorism" campaign is the brainchild of President Emmanuel Macron. Under the guise of "separatist operations," France closed 24 mosques in the previous two years.

Describing France as being subjected to a coordinated campaign by "radical Muslims" to secede from the French Republic and create a "parallel society", Emmanuel Macron called for brutal repression of organized Muslims, charities, schools, places of worship, and any initiative by Muslims to take part in civil society. The French president justified, like his predecessors, that the nation was dealing with second-class citizens who need unique measures in the case of non-white minorities, even though this was a complete violation of France's pledges to preserve fundamental rights.

Though France is a good example of influencing Islamophobia and provoking people to pledge to orthodox ideologies, other countries like Germany and Newzland have contributed their fair share to enhance Islamophobia in Europe. The idea of constraining a religion serves good to none. Only separation and agitation of the faithful are France's options as various schools will come together to obtain a better solution for these unending misinterpretations.

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