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.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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She says she is not an Islamist, has never been one and doesn’t plan on becoming one.