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Please don't burn or stone women, pleads Canadian town

Immigrant guidelines ruffle Muslim feathers

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The town of Herouxville in Quebec, which boasts one immigrant family among its 1,300 inhabitants, is at the centre of a race-relations rumpus after issuing a town council declaration on culture which reminds newcomers that "stoning [women] in public, burning them alive, burning them with acid, circumcising them etc", is an absolute no-no.

The guidelines on the town's website read: "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. We consider it completely outside norms to...kill women by stoning them in public, burning them alive, burning them with acid, circumcising them etc."

The BBC adds that the site "points out that women are allowed to drive, vote, dance and own their own homes". It also insists Sikh children are not allowed to bring "ceremonial daggers to school", despite a Supreme Court ruling to the contrary.

Councillor Andre Drouin, the man behind the enlightening text, told Canada's National Post: "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."

Salam Elmenyaw, president of the Muslim Council of Montreal, slammed the council, claiming it had "set back race relations decades". He told Reuters: "I was shocked and insulted to see these kinds of false stereotypes and ignorance about Islam and our religion."

In Montreal, meanwhile, police are investigating a 37-year-old officer who penned a musical ditty called That's Enough Already which "urges immigrants in Quebec to assimilate" with lines such as: "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 insisted 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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