Muslim parents face legal challenge in France after naming baby “Jihad”

A Muslim couple in France have been referred to the public prosecutor after naming their son “Jihad”.

Judges will now have to rule whether or not to order the parents to change the name of the child who was born in the south-western city of Toulouse in August.

Until 1993, French parents had to choose a first name for their children 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.

The Arabic word “jihad” means to “strive” or to “struggle”, but the term has in recent years become synonymous with terrorism.

The term “jihadists” is commonly used to describe “Islamist” militants, such as Al Qaeda and ISIS.

Given that France has been targeted over the past few years in a series of deadly terror attacks by so-called jihadists, judges are likely to prevent a child being named jihad.

The authorities have blocked the choice of name in several cases.

Names such as “Nutella” and “Fraise” (strawberry) have also fallen foul of the name police in France.

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