France issues first fines to women defying face veil ban

And so, the heinous law comes into full force for the first time. Via France issues first fines to women defying face veil ban – Europe, World – The Independent:

Two French Muslim women yesterday became, to their great satisfaction, the first victims of a law banning the wearing of the full-face veil in France.

Hind Ahmas and Najat Nait Ali had been hoping for convictions so they could start the lengthy process of challenging the law before the European Court of Human Rights. Ms Ahmas, 32, and Ms Ali, 36, were fined €120 (£104) and €80, respectively, for turning up at the town hall at Meaux, east of Paris, wearing their niqabs.

The mayor of Meaux is Jean-François Copé, the centre-right politician who drafted the law against the niqab and burka. It was Mr Copé’s birthday on the day the two women came to Meaux.

About 130 other women have been “ticketed” by police for wearing the niqab since the law took effect in April. All the others accepted verbal warnings or agreed to attend lessons on French civics. “This was a question of principle,” said Ms Ahmas, who demonstrated outside the court yesterday with half a dozen other veiled women, who were ignored by the police. “We sought this conviction deliberately. We will be claiming a victory once the law is abolished [by the European Court].”

More at the link, including a video report.

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