Excerpt:

France's Jews and Muslims united Tuesday to complain they were being used as pawns in a presidential election increasingly dominated by bitter disputes over national identity and ritual slaughter.

"France's problems are so major, as we are in a period of crisis, so how can the issue of kosher meat and halal meat be a major problem for France?" asked an exasperated Grand Rabbi of France, Gilles Bernheim.

For its part, the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) slammed what it said was the use of Muslims as "scapegoats" in the election campaign in which halal slaughter of animals has become a hot-button issue.


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