Friday, August 26, 2016

Moroccan Beaches - Burkinis and Bikinis

"Au Maroc, burkini et bikini coexistent sur les plages" The Moroccan Minister of Tourism, Lahcen Haddad, may have been speaking French, but his meaning was universally clear - Morocco is more tolerant than France, but, as he pointed out "This burkini story is a Franco-French affair and as a member of the Moroccan government, I am in no position to comment on the decisions of another country."

Diplomacy aside, Minister Haddad is correct. Visit a Moroccan beach and you will see a huge range of beachwear. However, some hotels and resorts have implemented bans in their pools. The Minister is quick to point out, that "... the ban on Burkini in Morocco emanates from some private institutions. We are in a Muslim country that also respects individual freedom and private initiative."
"The Moroccan state does not intervene there. On the beaches, people wear what they want provided you follow the rules of modesty. But for hygienic reasons of their own, some institutions and resorts do not tolerate the burkini. In Morocco we respect the values ​​of moderate Islam. bikini and burkini co-exist on our beaches." - Lahcen Haddad
The Minister also noted that in 2001, Morocco cracked down on Islamist association Al Adl Wa Al Ihssane’s members and supporters who attempted to Islamize Moroccan beaches.

“The Moroccan state takes control when citizens try to be vigilantes in public places,” he said, “the public beaches are available to everyone to access them, but no one has the right to tell others how to dress.”


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