French Council of the Muslim Faith

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The French Council of the Muslim Faith (French: Conseil français du culte musulman, usually abbreviated to CFCM), is a national elected body, to serve as an official interlocutor with the French state in the regulation of Muslim religious activities.[1] It is a non-profit group created on 28 May 2003, consisting of 25 CRCMs (Conseil Regional du Culte Musulman or Regional Councils of the Muslim Faith). From 2008 to 2013 the president of the CFCM is Anouar Kbibech, a CIO of SFR French telecommunications company representing the Rassemblement des Musulmans de France (fr).

While CFCM has no special legal standing, it is the de facto representative of the French Muslims before the national government. Nicolas Sarkozy, who was then Minister of the Interior, supported the creation of CFCM. The group includes other organizations, such as the Union of Islamic Organisations of France (UOIF). It is presumed that Sarkozy desired to have some "official" representative of the Muslim community, in the same manner as there exist "official" representatives of the Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant faiths. Critics allege that, in virtue of laïcité, there was no need to give official representation to a religious group, which led to communautarisme. They further note that most people of Muslim culture in France are not well represented by such religious institutions. Newspapers like Le Canard enchaîné or Charlie Hebdo have stressed that Sarkozy appeared to favour the UOIF.

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