French court bans burkinis, doesn’t block city and allows topless women in public swimming areas

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France’s top court on Tuesday ruled against “burkinis” in public swimming facilities, but did not crack down on women wearing topless in public.

France’s Council of State, the country’s highest administrative court, ruled that allowing the burkini swimwear – a modest full-length bathing suit worn by Muslim women – would violate the secular government and laws against religious influence.

Not long after the ban was lifted, it was reinstated by the Grenoble Administrative Court. The decision of the State Council on this issue has been awaited for weeks. The burkini had previously been legalized by the city of Grenoble in May 2021, along with topless swimming, following outcry from residents.

The State Council overturned lower court rulings allowing the burkini, stating that the religious nature of the garment and the impact it has on women’s rights make it unsuitable for public swimming pools.

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Algerian women wear a

Algerian women wear a ‘burkini’ in the sea at Oran beach, west of Algiers, on August 5, 2017.
(Billal Bensalem/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Muslim woman in a burkini enjoys the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico at San Marco Beach on Marco Island, Florida, September 1, 2018.

Muslim woman in a burkini enjoys the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico at San Marco Beach on Marco Island, Florida, September 1, 2018.
(Creative Touch Imaging Ltd./NurPhoto via Getty Images)

France, the birthplace of the bikini, has struggled with its standards for women’s swimwear for years.

In 2016, the swimsuits became controversial after an Islamist extremist attack on the city of Nice in France. Cities began banning the burkini, and police officers fined Muslim women who wore them and refused to remove some of their clothing or leave the beach.

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The mayor of Grenoble, Eric Piolle (L), from the French ecologist party EELV, alongside his first deputy Elisa Martin (C), chairs a meeting of the city council aimed at abolishing the dress code for bathing in municipal swimming pools, thus banning the wearing of the to approve

The mayor of Grenoble, Eric Piolle (L), from the French ecologist party EELV, alongside his first deputy Elisa Martin (C), chairs a meeting of the city council aimed at abolishing the dress code for bathing in municipal swimming pools, thus making the wearing of the Women’s “burkini” all-in-one swimsuit, on May 16, 2022 in Grenoble. (Photo by JEFF PACHOUD/AFP via Getty Images)

France is not alone in the growing debate about swimwear and the lack of it. Nudity laws prohibiting topless women on the beach have been challenged and sometimes repealed in the United States.

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A Nantucket, Massachusetts The proposal, titled “Gender Equality on Beaches,” which would allow anyone to go topless on beaches, was passed at last month’s annual town meeting.

The change read: “To promote equality for all persons, any person may be topless on any public or private beach” in the city.

That regulation, proposed by Dorothy Stover, a seventh-generation resident of Nantucket, was accepted by Gender Equality on Beaches by a vote of 327 to 242, according to the WCVB. In the next step, the measure should now be approved by the Attorney General’s Office.

Fox News’ Haley Chi-Sing and The New York Post contributed to this report.