The row over plans by the French government to partially ban the wearing of the Muslim burqa has taken a new twist.
The government is defending a decision to refuse to give citizenship to a foreign man who forces his wife to wear the full-face veil.
It is reported the man from Morocco needed citizenship to settle in France with his French wife.
French Immigration Minister Eric Besson said: “He expressly said that he refused the principle of secularism, that he rejects equality between men and women – he announced very clearly that males and females are not equal – and he admitted that he’s the one who forces his wife to wear the burqa.”
The government’s announcement comes just days after a parliamentary commission called for a new law on the burqa.
Sparking widespread debate, the commission proposed a ban on the veil in public places such as schools, hospitals and government offices.