Turkey criticises France’s bill against radical Islam

French President Emmanuel Macron has described Islam as a religion ‘in crisis’ worldwide. (AP pic)

ISTANBUL: Turkey on Sunday criticised proposed legislation in France aimed at defending the country’s secular values against radical Islam.

On Friday, President Emmanuel Macron said his government would present a bill in December to fight “Islamist separatism” and strengthen the country’s bedrock 1905 law that officially separated church and state.

Describing Islam as a religion “in crisis” worldwide, Macron insisted that “no concessions” would be made in a new drive to eradicate extremist religious teaching in schools and mosques.

“We believe the mindset behind this bill will lead to grave consequences rather than solve France’s problems,” the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement.

It said it would be more appropriate to “adopt a constructive discourse… rather than a security-oriented perspective toward religious issues”.

The ministry also noted widespread concern that such efforts would only fuel growing xenophobia, racism and Islamophobia in Europe.