French President Nicolas Sarkozy says there is no place for full face and body veils such as the burqa, or for the debasement of women, in France.

Sarkozy says all beliefs will be respected in France but says "becoming French means adhering to a form of civilization, to values, to morals."

Sarkozy said Thursday during a speech on national identity that "France is a country where there is no place for the burqa." France has a large Muslim community but only a small minority of French Muslim women wear burqas, common in Afghanistan, or other face-covering veils.

Sarkozy said in June that burqas would not be welcome in France. Since then a parliamentary panel has been looking into the possibility of banning them in public.