The ban on abaya (long dress) in schools has taken on a new dimension after many students in France were deprived of classes for wearing the new generation kimono, long shirts or loose dresses.

A 15-year-old Muslim student living in Lyon sent a complaint to Ashwini K.P., the UN Rapporteur on the Elimination of Racism, for "discrimination on the grounds of religious affiliation".

The student filed the complaint against France through his lawyer Nabil Boudi.

"We believe that the French government, particularly the Ministry of Education, has failed to take the necessary steps to prevent all forms of discrimination against women," the petition said, criticizing French Education Minister Gabriel Attal's ban on abaya in schools.

The petition reminded that France is a signatory to international treaties and conventions prohibiting discrimination and recalled the history of political and legal attacks on the dress of Muslim women in this country.

The petition criticized the French authorities for applying norms that give rise to discriminatory acts, especially against foreign-born and Muslim girls.

On September 5, the female student, who was removed from the classroom and not allowed to attend classes because she was wearing a kimono, also filed a complaint with the Lyon Public Prosecutor's Office on the grounds that she was "discriminated against on the basis of her religious affiliation".

French Education Minister Attal's announcement on August 27 that he would not allow long dresses such as abaya and entari to be worn in schools on the grounds that they were against secularism caused controversy.

On August 31, Attal announced on France Inter radio that as of the new academic year, abayas worn by girls will be banned, as well as entaris worn by boys.

The decision to ban abayas was appealed to the Council of State by the ADM Association, which fights for Muslim rights, on the grounds that it violates fundamental freedoms.

Attal said that on September 4, 298 students were identified wearing abayas to school, 67 of whom were sent home for not complying with the ban.

The Council of State ruled on September 7 that the abaya ban did not violate "the rights to respect for private life, worship and education."

Source: French student denied access to classes because of her dress takes discrimination to UN