The debate in Quebec about the clothes Muslim women choose to wear is back in the spotlight — less than six months before the fall provincial election.
Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante suggested last week she is open to city police officers wearing a turban or a hijab as part of the uniform.
Around the same time, Eve Torres, a 44-year-old Muslim mother of three who wears a hijab, said she is seeking the nomination in a Montreal-area riding for Quebec Solidaire, the legislature’s most left-leaning party.
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Torres is so far unopposed and is being billed as the first veiled woman to run in a Quebec provincial election and that has led to some heated criticism.
A column by Denise Bombardier in Le Journal de Montréal includes a photo of a veiled Torres under the headline, “Our dark future.”
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Fellow columnist Mathieu Bock-Cote, and another writer for Le Journal, Lise Ravary, suggested Torres was an “Islamist,” a word that carries a strong connotation of fundamentalism.
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Torres, who describes herself as a feminist who is running to fight for “social justice,” told The Canadian Press in an interview that she was expecting the reaction.
She says she is not an Islamist, has never been one and doesn’t plan on becoming one.