France makes abortion a constitutional right, first in the world

Adebari Oguntoye
Adebari Oguntoye

French lawmakers have approved the bill to make abortion a constitutional right for women in the country.

The parliamentarians, on Monday, voted 780-72, making France the first country in the world to “guarantee the freedom” of women to abortion.

President Emmanuel Macron has been pushing for the enshrining of abortion as a women’s right in the French constitution.

Macron said the new amendment will now allow “the law to determine the conditions by which the freedom of women to have recourse to an abortion is exercised, which is guaranteed.”.

After the voting, the French president was said to have invited members of the French parliament for a special meeting at the Palace of Versailles in Paris.

The bill received massive support from the lower house of the parliament of France’s national assembly in January.

On February 1, some French protesters demonstrated in support of abortion rights during a debate on the draft law on the constitution at the senate in Paris, France’s capital.

BBC reports that about 85 percent of French are in support of the bill despite stern disapproval by right-wingers in parliament.

Discussions on the constitutional review of abortion rights in France were prompted after the US Supreme Court removed the right to abortion in 2022.

Many people have criticised the relevance of the bill, arguing that it is not a constitutional matter.

Speaking on the bill, Gabriel Attal, French prime minister, said women’s right to abortion has been “in danger and at the mercy of decision makers”.

“I am telling women, within our borders and beyond, the era of a world of hope is starting,” Attal said.

The recent constitutional amendment makes it the 25th review of the document by the parliament.

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