Economy

French parents under investigation for naming their baby 'Jihad'

French parents under investigation for naming their baby 'Jihad'”

When the parents chose the controversial name for their son, who was born in August, officials in the Toulouse suburb of Léguevin alerted the public prosecutor, The Local of France reported.

"Jihad" in Arabic means "effort" or "struggle", not specifically "holy war".

French judges are set to rule on whether a family in southern France can call their child "Jihad", a legal source told AFP on Monday.

Jihad is in fact a "fundamental concept in Islam" meaning making "the effort to achieve good" explained co-founder of the Toulouse Centre of Muslim Spirituality, Aderrahmane Oumachar.

The opportunity to give this name is now transferred to the parquet floor of Toulouse, who may choose to initiate a procedure by entering a family court judge.

Is it acceptable to name your baby "Jihad" in France, which has suffered Europe's worst Islamist terror attacks in recent years?

Until 1993, French parents had to choose a first name for their offspring from an officially approved list, but now they are allowed to pick any name as long as it does not go against the child's interest.

Authorities have also stopped parents from naming their children Nutella and Fraise (Strawberry).

Oumachar did acknowledge that given the current climate, the name could "cause misunderstanding" and "harm the development of the child".

According to The Telegraph, in 2013 a mother whose son is named Jihad sent the three-year-old boy to school in Nimes in a t-shirt that read "I am a bomb" on the front, and "Born on September 11" on the back.

The mother, 35 years old at the time, was given a suspended prison sentence for glorifying terrorism.



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