French hold negative views of Islam

Almost three out of four French people (73%) say they have a negative image of Islam, when other religions are acceptable to a clear majority, according to a survey released today.

Questioned by the Tilder company and the Montaigne Institute, as part of the “Place aux idées” programme broadcast this evening on LCP TV, 87% of French have a positive image of Buddhism, 76% of Protestantism, 69% of Catholicism and 64% of Judaism, but only 26% of Islam, with 1% not expressing an opinion.

Although for 52% Islam is a religion like others and for 40% the presence of Islam in France enriches French culture, only 36% think the practice of Islam is compatible with the laws of the Republic. A third of respondents (33%) admitted they were not familiar with Islam and only 32% think its values are compatible with those of French society.

Regarding practices associated with the Muslim religion, 77% said that the pilgrimage to Mecca was compatible with social life in France, rising to 55% for the eating of halal meat, 51% for celebrating the festival of Eid, 47% for fasting during the month of Ramadan, 36% for carrying out five prayers a day. Only 10% of the French found the wearing of the veil by women in public spaces to be compatible.

Le Figaro, 16 April 2013

Update:  See also, 18 April 2013