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French Senate debates Muslim headscarf bill

October 29, 2019 GMT
FILE - In this April 15, 2017 file photo, women look at Islamic face-covering veils and clothes displayed inside an exhibition hall at the France Muslim Annual Fair in Le Bourget, north of Paris. France's Senate is voting Tuesday Oct.29, 2019 on a bill that would forbid Muslim mothers from wearing headscarves on school field trips, amid resurgent tensions around the country's unusually strict interpretation of secularism (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)
FILE - In this April 15, 2017 file photo, women look at Islamic face-covering veils and clothes displayed inside an exhibition hall at the France Muslim Annual Fair in Le Bourget, north of Paris. France's Senate is voting Tuesday Oct.29, 2019 on a bill that would forbid Muslim mothers from wearing headscarves on school field trips, amid resurgent tensions around the country's unusually strict interpretation of secularism (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)
FILE - In this April 15, 2017 file photo, women look at Islamic face-covering veils and clothes displayed inside an exhibition hall at the France Muslim Annual Fair in Le Bourget, north of Paris. France's Senate is voting Tuesday Oct.29, 2019 on a bill that would forbid Muslim mothers from wearing headscarves on school field trips, amid resurgent tensions around the country's unusually strict interpretation of secularism (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)
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FILE - In this April 15, 2017 file photo, women look at Islamic face-covering veils and clothes displayed inside an exhibition hall at the France Muslim Annual Fair in Le Bourget, north of Paris. France's Senate is voting Tuesday Oct.29, 2019 on a bill that would forbid Muslim mothers from wearing headscarves on school field trips, amid resurgent tensions around the country's unusually strict interpretation of secularism (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)
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FILE - In this April 15, 2017 file photo, women look at Islamic face-covering veils and clothes displayed inside an exhibition hall at the France Muslim Annual Fair in Le Bourget, north of Paris. France's Senate is voting Tuesday Oct.29, 2019 on a bill that would forbid Muslim mothers from wearing headscarves on school field trips, amid resurgent tensions around the country's unusually strict interpretation of secularism (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)

PARIS (AP) — The French Senate is debating a bill that would require Muslim mothers who wear headscarves to remove them on school outings.

The bill under consideration on Monday comes amid a weeks-long uproar over French secularism and headscarves at the center of the debate.

The thorny topic moved into the headlines in mid-October after a far-right National Rally representative at a regional council demanded that a Muslim woman in the chamber remove her headscarf, causing a scandal.

The measure under debate was introduced by the mainstream right months earlier.

Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer told Senators any law forbidding head coverings on school outings would be “counter-productive.” A 2005 law banned students from wearing headscarves in classrooms.

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The bill has little chance of passing in the lower house and becoming law.