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Published On:21 April 2011
Posted by Indian Muslim Observer

French blame immigrants for integration failure: poll

France has seen intense media coverage of issues such as its ban on full-face veils, concern over Muslims praying in the street and a public debate on the role of Islam in France.

Paris: Two-thirds of French people see the integration of immigrants into France as a failure and most believe the fault lies with the immigrants, an opinion poll showed on Wednesday.

In the poll by Harris Interactive, published in the daily Le Parisien, 66% of respondents said immigrants had adapted badly to life in France and just over half felt the situation had worsened in the past ten years.

More than three quarters of the sample group said immigrants had not made enough of an effort to adapt to French society, according to the poll, carried out between April 8-10 among 1,631 people from all political backgrounds.

The results mirror those from an IFOP poll in January. They reveal deepening unease over the French integration model and reflect similar trends across Europe, where fears that foreigners are taking advantage of welfare systems is boosting support for far-right parties.

“Look at what’s happening in Finland. Look at what happened in Sweden. We are in a situation where views on immigrants are changing at a European level and people are asking to be reassured,” said Jean-Daniel Levy, head of research at the Harris Interactive polling agency.

Swedish voters elected a far-right party into parliament last year and the populist True Finns party scored strongly in Finland’s parliamentary election on Sunday.

France’s anti-immigrant National Front is eating into support for President Nicolas Sarkozy’s centre-right party, opinion polls show.

Anxiety about immigrants in general and Muslims in particular has featured prominently in early campaigning for the 2012 presidential election in France, home to Europe’s largest Muslim population, estimated at five to six million according to the Interior Ministry.

France has seen intense media coverage of issues such as its ban on full-face veils, concern over Muslims praying in the street and a public debate on the role of Islam in France.

“Public displays of faith are troubling to many French people ... but to suggest that this trend is artificial or fabricated by politicians is an exaggeration,” Mr. Levy said.

“These views (on immigrants) are common to voters on the right and the left, as well as high- and low-earners.

(Courtesy: National Post)

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Posted by Indian Muslim Observer on April 21, 2011. Filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Feel free to leave a response

By Indian Muslim Observer on April 21, 2011. Filed under , , . Follow any responses to the RSS 2.0. Leave a response

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