UN Human Rights Committee - Law forbidding the concealment of the face in public spaces (11.10.18)


The UN Human Rights Committee, which brings together experts responsible for overseeing the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, will shortly provide observations on the law of October 11, 2010, which forbids the concealment of the face in public spaces.

France reaffirms that this law forbids the concealment of the face in public spaces insofar that it is considered incompatible with the principle of fraternity and the basic core of values of a democratic and open society. Every person is therefore free to wear in public spaces clothes that are intended to express a religious conviction, provided that they allow the face to be visible.

In its decision of July 1, 2014, the European Court of Human Rights itself ruled that this law does not infringe upon the freedom of conscience or the freedom of religion, and that it is not discriminatory.

France therefore underscores the full legitimacy of a law aimed at guaranteeing the conditions of social harmony necessary for the full enjoyment of civil and political rights, to which it is attached and which it promotes in its external policies.