Updated: 01/09/17 : 11:46:59
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World :: Paris public park opens nudists area

A public park near the French capital Paris has opened an area for nudists.

The site, as large as a football pitch, will be open until 15 October in the Bois de Vincennes, east of the city, as part of a temporary experiment.

Officials say no exhibitionism or voyeurism will be tolerated. A charter of "good behaviour" will be displayed.

"[This] is part of our open-minded vision for the use of Parisian public spaces," says Penelope Komites, a deputy mayor in charge of the parks.

Signs will inform visitors about the space for nudists or naturists. It will be open between 8:00 and 19:30 near the park's bird reserve.

Those who support the move say that, in a country with numerous clothes-free beaches and holiday camps, Paris should also be a draw for naturists.

"It's a true joy, it's one more freedom for naturists," Julien Claude-Penegry of the Paris Naturists Association told AFP news agency.

"It shows the city's broad-mindedness and will help change people's attitudes toward nudity, toward our values and our respect for nature," he said, estimating that thousands of people could use the site.

But the idea has also faced criticism. When it was first announced, last year, one centrist politician called it "crazy".

Parisians already have one public pool where they can swim naked three times a week.