Women's rights organisations hailed France's historic decision to enshrine the right to abortion in its constitution on Monday, while anti-abortion organisations sharply denounced the move.
 
In a rare joint vote of the two houses of parliament held under the golden ceilings of Versailles Palace, just outside of paris, senators and members of parliament overwhelmingly supported the measure, voting 780 votes to 72.
 
A massive screen presented the results of the referendum, and while the eiffel tower blinked in the backdrop, abortion rights supporters assembled in downtown paris rejoiced and applauded. The statement "MyBodyMyChoice" was flashed.


In france, like in many other countries, abortion rights are increasingly universally recognised. According to surveys, almost 80% of French people support the legalisation of abortion.
 
Before the vote, prime minister Gabriel Attal told MPs, "We're sending a message to all women: your body belongs to you and no one can decide for you."
 
Since a regulation passed in 1974, which was highly denounced at the time, women in france have been legally allowed to undergo abortions.

However, proponents of women's constitutional rights to abortion have pushed for france to be the first nation to formally safeguard such rights in its fundamental legislation, following the US supreme Court's 2022 decision to overturn the Roe v. Wade verdict.

"In the US, the right to an abortion has receded. Therefore, nothing gave us the right to believe that france was immune to this danger," said Laura Slimani of the rights organisation Fondation des Femmes.

"There's a lot of emotion, as a feminist activist, also as a woman," Slimani stated.

The French constitution's Article 34, which states that "the law determines the conditions in which a woman has the guaranteed freedom to have recourse to an abortion," was solidified on Monday.

"France is at the forefront," stated Yael Braun-Pivet, the leader of the lower chamber of parliament and a member of the centrist party of French President Emmanuel Macron.
 


 


 

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