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Last Updated: Wednesday, 31 January 2007, 10:09 GMT
No stoning, Canada migrants told
Welcome sign in Herouxville
Herouxville has one immigrant family in its 1,300 population
Don't stone women to death, burn them or circumcise them, immigrants wishing to live in the town of Herouxville in Quebec, Canada, have been told.

The rules come in a new town council declaration on culture that Muslims have branded shocking and insulting.

Quebec is in the midst of a huge debate on integrating immigrant cultures.

Montreal police are investigating an officer who wrote a song called That's Enough Already, which says immigrants are undermining Quebec culture.

'Not racist'

Herouxville, which has one immigrant family in its population of about 1,300, is 160km (100 miles) north-east of Montreal.

Its council published the new rules on the town's website.

I was shocked and insulted to see these kinds of false stereotypes and ignorance about Islam and our religion
Salam Elmenyawi,
Muslim Council of Montreal

"We wish to inform these new arrivals that the way of life which they abandoned when they left their countries of origin cannot be recreated here," the declaration reads.

"We consider it completely outside norms to... kill women by stoning them in public, burning them alive, burning them with acid, circumcising them etc."

It points out that women are allowed to drive, vote, dance and own their own homes.

The rules ban Sikh children from carrying ceremonial daggers to school, even though the Supreme Court has ruled they can.

The man behind the declaration, councillor Andre Drouin, told the National Post newspaper the rules were not racist.

"We invite people from all nationalities, all languages, all sexual orientations, whatever, to come live with us, but we want them to know ahead of time how we live," he said.

Mr Drouin said there had been a number of recent incidents of culture clashes that meant the new rules were needed.

In one a Toronto judge ordered a Christmas tree removed from a court so as not to offend non-Christians. In another a Montreal gym installed frosted windows after a Hasidic synagogue complained the sight of adults exercising was offensive.

Andre Drouin
Mr Drouin said most e-mails were supportive of the new declaration

However, the president of the Muslim Council of Montreal, Salam Elmenyawi, condemned the council, saying it had set back race relations decades.

He told Reuters news agency: "I was shocked and insulted to see these kinds of false stereotypes and ignorance about Islam and our religion."

A poll in a Montreal newspaper this month revealed that 59% of Quebecers admitted to some kind of racist feelings.

Montreal police are considering disciplinary action against the 37-year-old officer who wrote the song urging immigrants in Quebec to assimilate.

The song includes the lines: "We want to accept ethnics, but not at any price... if you're not happy with your fate, there's a place called the airport."

Police spokesman Yan Lafreniere said the song did not uphold the values of the Montreal police force and that the officer would be questioned as to his motives.


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