Paris - Lying on a sunny beach, this dozing woman is woken by armed police officers and confronted about her clothing.
The four officers, who were enforcing a ban on burkinis, stood over her as she removed her long-sleeved top in the middle of the beach on Promenade des Anglais in Nice.
An officer then appeared to kneel down to write out a fine for the woman for breaking France’s controversial ban – swimming costumes that cover the whole body have been outlawed in 15 towns because they “ostentatiously” show religious affiliation.
In an earlier incident at Cannes, a Muslim mother was threatened with pepper spray, ordered off the beach and fined by police simply for wearing a headscarf.
The 34-year-old French citizen was told she had broken the law even though she was not wearing a burkini. She said the “racist” officers had wanted to humiliate her in front of her children. She was wearing leggings and a top to protect herself from the sun, unaware that Cannes is one of the resorts to enforce a ban on burkinis and similar beachwear.
Its Right-wing mayor David Lisnard said such clothing was unwelcome at a time when France was a target for Islamic State terrorism – 86 people were killed in an attack on the Promenade des Anglais last month.
On Tuesday a tribunal in Nice rejected a challenge to the ban by human rights groups, ruling that the burkini was liable to cause offence and to provoke violence.
Feiza Ben Mohamed, of the Federation of Muslims of the South of France, accused the authorities of “shamefully mixing up terrorists with the wider Muslim community”.