In the holy month of Ramadan, French Muslims contend with another place of worship being defaced.

Muslims worshippers in the French city Bordeaux woke up yesterday to discover a mosque construction site defaced with Islamophobic graffiti.

The Muslim Association of Talence announced the attack on their official Facebook page calling the messages "racist, hateful and Islamophobic."

In a message on social media, the President of the mosque, Mohamed Boultam, said, "Seeing these inscriptions and these drawings on a place of worship is very difficult to overcome. Especially since it is a place of passage, with families and children. It is unacceptable."

Boultam has said that the mosque will make an official complaint and that they had been in contact with the police following Wednesday's attack.

Messages on the entrance read "stop with your mosques" and other offensive slurs.

Boultam sought to reassure the local Muslim community urging everyone to stay calm, adding that the attack was "an act of provocation to sow disorder in the neighbourhood and the town, knowing that it's very peaceful. You have to let the police do their job."

A local politician, Emmanuel Sallaberry, also commented following the attack.

"The site of the Talence mosque has been tagged with Islamophobic and homophobic messages," he said in a Facebook post.

"I strongly condemn this act contrary to fundamental freedoms and the values of our Republic...I trust the police and the justice system to find and strongly condemn the perpetrators," Sallaberry went on to add.

The latest Islamophobic attack follows one earlier this month where on the eve of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the walls of the Avicenna mosque and Islamic cultural centre in Rennes, western France, were defaced with xenophobic graffiti.

The messages read "Long Live France" and "immigration kills."

Following widespread reporting of the attack, the country's right-wing interior minister Gerald Darmanin condemned the actions and claimed "solidarity" with the country's 5.4 million Muslims.

In recent years anti-Muslim attacks and rhetoric have been on the increase in France, fanned primarily by politicians.

Darmanin, in a televised interview with the country's extreme far-right leader Marine Le Pen, accused her of not being tough enough on Islam.

But Darmanin is also acting mainly on the orders of French President Emmanuel Macron, who is increasingly embattled following his poor handling of the Covid-19 pandemic and elections looming next year.

Macron's poll numbers have been in the doldrums for months, with more than 60 percent of French people disapproving of the job he's doing in the country.

Attacking Muslims has become a key pillar of Macron's re-election strategy as he seeks to burnish his right-wing credentials.

The so-called 'Separatism Bill' currently making its way through the French legislature would seek to make the lives of Muslims much more difficult and, as a result, has also emboldened anti-Muslim bigots.

Part of the proposals would see Muslim girls under the age of 18 forbidden from wearing the Muslim headscarf. Muslim women wearing the headscarf would be prohibited from attending school trips with their children, and Algerian flags could be banned in official government buildings.

More recently, the French government denied the existence of Islamophobia while requiring the leadership of the Muslim community to sign up to a controversial document called the "Charter of Imams."

The document, a pet project of Macron, outlines a set of principles that would define an Islam of France. Those who don't sign up to the charter, which, amongst other things, forbids imams from speaking about state-led racism, will be considered extremists.

Source: TRT World