Islam ‘too prominent’, French think

Sixty percent of the French think Islam is too prominent in their country and nearly half view the religion as a threat to national identity, according to a survey published Thursday.

Islam 'too prominent', French think
Paris's Grand Mosque. Photo: Fay Celestial

Thirty-five percent said they were indifferent and only five percent thought the presence of Islam was not overwhelming, an Ifop survey for Le Figaro newspaper said.

The poll covered 1,736 persons and was conducted between October 15 and 18.

Forty-three percent said the presence of Muslims was a "threat" for national identity, 43 percent said they did not view it as a problem and only 17 percent saw it as culturally enriching.

France has a population of 65 million, including an estimated four million Muslims, the largest Islamic population in Western Europe.

Of those surveyed by Ifop, 67 percent said Muslims were not integrated into the mainstream and 68 percent thought Muslims were to blame for this.

France is officially a secular republic but religious tensions have been rising after an Al-Qaeda inspired gunman killed seven people in March as well as a grenade attack by Islamist radicals on a kosher grocery near Paris.

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