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Fadela Amara told the Financial Times that a veil covering everything but the eyes represented "the oppression of women".
"The burka represents not a piece of fabric but the political manipulation of a religion that enslaves women and disputes the principal of equality between men and women, one of the founding principles of our republic," she said.
France was a beacon for an enlightened Islam at ease with modernity, so it was necessary to fight the "gangrene, the cancer of radical Islam which completely distorts the message of Islam", she said.