Emmanuel Macron received, Wednesday, November 18 evening, the leaders of the French Council of Muslim Worship (CFCM) who, at his request, presented the main lines of a national council of imams responsible for labeling imams in France.
The Head of State also asked them to write within two weeks, in conjunction with the Ministry of the Interior, a “Charter of republican values” on which the CFCM and the nine federations that make it up will have to commit. He gave them an appointment in a fortnight to come and present this charter to him, said the Elysee, confirming the information from the Figaro and you Parisian.
This charter must affirm the recognition of the values of the Republic, specify that Islam in France is a religion and not a political movement, and stipulate the end of interference or affiliation with foreign states.
Get out of ambiguous positions
Since his speech against separatism and radical Islam in early October, and even more since the assassination of Samuel Paty and the Nice attack, the Head of State has increased his pressure on the governing bodies of Islam by France to fight against foreign influence, radicalization and political Islam. Its objective is to put an end, within four years, to the presence in France of the 300 foreign imams. “Detached” by Turkey, Morocco and Algeria.
This is the fourth time since the start of the school year that he has received at the Elysee the leaders of the CFCM, whom he has seen approximately every two weeks, according to the presidency. On Wednesday, alongside the Minister of the Interior Gerald Darmanin, he received the president of the council Mohammed Moussaoui and Chems-Eddine Hafiz, rector of the Mosque of Paris, but also the representatives of the nine federations that make up the CFCM – except one, absent for personal reasons.
The Head of State told them that he knew that several of these federations have ambiguous positions on these subjects and that it was necessary “Get out of these ambiguities”. Among these nine federations, representative of a large part of the Muslim faith, three have “Not a republican vision”, like the Milli Görüs, of Turkish obedience, and the Muslims of France, ex-UOIF, reports the Elysee. “If some do not sign this charter, we will draw the consequences”, warned the president, who has “Took note of their proposals”.
The council of imams, presented as a kind of council of the order on the model of that of lawyers, will not only be able to label imams and give them an official card – currently no label is necessary and it is possible to To proclaim themselves imam – but also to withdraw their approval in the event of a breach of the charter and of a code of ethics that it will have to develop.
The president gave the CFCM six months to implement a training framework for imams. Depending on their role – imams leading the prayer, imams who are preachers and imams as lecturers – they will be asked for different levels of knowledge of French and diplomas, up to university training. The Council will have to fit the current imams into this model.
An “Enlightenment Islam”
The federations represented “Recalled their attachment to France and felt that this was the historic moment”, to achieve this goal, according to the Elysee. “My confidence obliges you”, Emmanuel Macron told them, who again pleaded for a “Enlightenment Islam”.
“It is immense pressure that we are going to exert on them [les autorités musulmanes], we don’t have the right to fail ”, insisted Emmanuel Macron by presenting on October 2 the outline of the future law against separatism, inseparable from the thorny challenge of the training of imams ” French-style “. The bill must be presented to the Council of Ministers on December 9.
The Head of State then gave six months to the CFCM to lead to a certification body for imams, a project launched many times under the previous five-year terms without having ever been successful for nearly forty years.
The CFCM’s membership in this new organization of Muslim worship in France would mark a victory for Emmanuel Macron, the target of sometimes violent criticism from Muslims in several countries for his remarks on an Islam. ” in crisis “ and his speech against radical Islam. In addition to calls for a boycott of French products, the French president, who rejects any accusation of being anti-Muslim and defends a neutral secularism vis-à-vis all cults, has even personally become the target of jihadist threats.