Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo
Anne Hidalgo has threatened to sue the organisers for discrimination - File photo Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes

The mayor of Paris is seeking to ban a black feminist festival in the city on the grounds of it being discriminatory.

Anne Hidalgo said that the Nyansapo Festival, which dubbed itself as an event rooted in black feminism, excludes white people. Hidalgo has condemned the festival and tweeted: "I am asking for this festival to be banned."

The Socialist city council leader also said that she reserved the right "to prosecute the organisers for discrimination".

The Nyansapo Festival is scheduled to run between 28 and 30 July at a cultural centre in the capital city of France.

Hidalgo's comments came after the organisers – the Mwasi feminist association – mentioned on its website that 80% of the venue would be reserved for black women.

It added that black people irrespective of gender would be allowed in another area, while a third area would be open to all.

Some French anti-racism organisations have also condemned the festival, calling it a "mistake".

SOS Racisme described the event "an abomination" and said it "wallows in ethnic separation", while Licra, the International League against Racism and Antisemitism, said: "Rosa Parks would be turning in her grave".

The regional head of Marine Le Pen's National Front party, Wallerand de Saint-Just, had also questioned the mayor and asked her to explain how the city was fine with an event that was "promoting a concept that is blatantly racist and anti-republican".

Police prefect Michel Delpuech said in a statement that police had not been informed about the upcoming event by Sunday (28 May) evening. But he added that the police "would ensure the rigorous compliance of the laws, values, and principles of the republic".

But the outrage has left the organisers of the event disheartened.

The cultural centre La Generale, where the event was to be hosted, and the Mwasi feminist association have said that they were the "target of a disinformation campaign and of 'fake news' orchestrated by the foulest far right".

"We are saddened to see certain antiracist associations letting them be manipulated like this."