• France edition
 
Hollande set to sign gay marriage into French law
Photo: AFP

Hollande set to sign gay marriage into French law

Published: 17 May 2013 17:12 GMT+02:00
Updated: 17 May 2013 17:12 GMT+02:00

The final hurdle preventing the gay marriage bill from becoming law was overcome on Friday when the legislation was passed by France's Constitutional Council, after it turned
down a challenge by the opposition.

The issue of gay marriage and adoption for same sex couples has divided France with mas street protests being held by opponents of the bill, some of which have ended in violence.

France made history on April 23 when it became the 14th country to vote gay marriage into law but opposition UMP deputies referred the bill to the Council, which has the right to throw it out if it is against the country's constitution.

However "Les Sages" as the council members are known has suggested they would not intervene with the wishes of parliament and on Friday they stuck to their word.

A statement by the Council said same-sex marriage "did not run contrary to any constitutional principles," and that it did not infringe "basic rights or liberties or national sovereignty."

The council also said that gay adoption did not automatically mean the "right to a child" and that the "interest of the child" would be the overriding factor in such cases.

All that remains now is for Francois Hollande to sign the bill into law. Immediately after the council's decision the president, eager to put the bill to bed, announced he would sign the bill into law as soon as Saturday.

The first gay wedding can be held 10 days after Hollande signs it into law, although some mayors across the country have refused to administer the ceremonies.

On Saturday, France will become the 14th country to legalise same-sex marriage, joining a club of eight other European nations -- the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Norway, Sweden, Portugal, Iceland and Denmark.

Friday's decision by the council will delight supporters of the bill but will further anger protestors, who have stage mass street rallies in recent months to demonstrate their opposition to the proposal.

Despite parliament having passed the bill another protest is planned for May 26th.

A Parisian socialite who goes by the name of Frigide Barjot and has become the public face of the movement opposing gay marriage said the council's go-ahead was a "provocation," adding that France was trying to change "civilisation."

Barjot whose assumed name is a play on the name of French film star Brigitte Bardot, a sex symbol in the 1960s, and translates as Frigid Loony told AFP: "It's an institutional revolution," adding: "We are in the process of changing civilisation."

When parliament passed the bill in April Justice Minister Christiane Taubira hailed the adoption of the bill as a "historic" moment in French history.

"It grants new rights, stands firmly against discrimination (and) testifies to our country's respect for the institution of marriage," she said in a statement shortly after the vote.

"This law... brightens the horizons of many of our citizens who were deprived of these rights," she said.

The Local/AFP (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Profile
French suicide: 'Racist' author taps into malaise
A French right-wing author's new book is selling lots and lots of copies, but why? Photo: Pierre Verdy/AFP

French suicide: 'Racist' author taps into malaise

A controversial new book by French polemicist Eric Zemmour is flying off the shelves and shows no sign of stopping. The notorious right-wing writer and polemicist appears to have struck a chord with a French public feeling disillusioned and "lost". READ  

'We need to tell migrants the UK is not El Dorado'
UK Ambassador to France Sir Peter Ricketts with Queen Elizabeth at a garden party in Paris this summer. Photo: Martin Bureau/AFP

'We need to tell migrants the UK is not El Dorado'

The UK Ambassador to France Sir Peter Ricketts has weighed into the ongoing Calais migrants crisis by saying “Migrants need to be told that Britain is not El Dorado." READ  

CEO's plane crash due to 'criminal negligence'
Images taken from a 3D video reconstruction of the plane crash by Russian media Life News.

CEO's plane crash due to 'criminal negligence'

The Moscow air crash that killed Total's CEO Christophe de Margerie was caused by "criminal negligence" on the part of senior airport officials, Russian investigators said on Tuesday. Initial reports said the driver of a snow plough that collided with the plane had been drunk. READ  

France's Socialist rebels refuse to back budget
Rebels in France's Socialist Party have refused to back the government's 2015 budget in a parliamentary vote. Photo: AFP

France's Socialist rebels refuse to back budget

A group of rebels in France’s ruling Socialist Party flexed their muscles on Tuesday by refusing to back the government’s 2015 budget in a parliamentary vote. It's another sign of a growing split in President François Hollande's party. READ  

French docs develop 'high speed' Ebola test
French doctors say they have created a Photo: Pascal Guyot/AFP

French docs develop 'high speed' Ebola test

As fears over Ebola continue to grow, French researchers announced on Tuesday they have developed a simple test that could detect the deadly disease in 15 minutes. READ  

How France could make learning French easier
How learning French could be so much easier. Photo: Shutterstock

How France could make learning French easier

Let's imagine for a moment France decided to make learning French easier for Anglos in a bid to get more people speaking their language. What could the language guardians at the Académie Français do to make it simpler for us? Here's ten ideas. READ  

Movie monster 'Alien Queen' moves to France
The "Queen Alien" from US movie series is shown with the Frenchman who rescued her from ruin. Photo: Philippe Merle/AFP

Movie monster 'Alien Queen' moves to France

The alien queen at the heart of the American "Alien" film saga was forgotten until being rescued by a Frenchman who restored her to all her terrifying glory. Her faithful followers are now flocking to see her in a museum in Lyon. READ  

Profile - Christophe de Margerie
Total's 'Big Moustache': Not your average oil exec
France's Christophe de Margerie, the CEO of Total, was not your average oil executive. Photo: Carl Court/AFP

Total's 'Big Moustache': Not your average oil exec

Christophe de Margerie, the French CEO of Total, who was killed in a freak plane crash in Moscow on Tuesday, stood out among top executives for his love of a joke, his big bushy moustache and the fact he spent his whole career at one company. READ  

France and Germany to draw up growth plan
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble (L) and French Finance Minister Michel Sapin address a joint press conference in Berlin. Photo: Tobias Schwarz/AFP

France and Germany to draw up growth plan

Although France didn't persuade Germany to invest €50 billion in the eurozone's flagging economy Paris and Berlin did agree to draw up an action plan for exactly what was needed to boost growth. READ  

Burglar caught sipping bubbly during break-in
A burglar in France popped the champagne cork too early and ended up being caught red handed. Photo: Shutterstock

Burglar caught sipping bubbly during break-in

A burglar in France was so happy after breaking into a house in France he decided to crack open the bubbly and turn on the TV. But then the owners returned home. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
International
How a giant 'sex toy' earned an American artist a slap in Paris
National
'Unlike in the US the French don't put the blame on the poor'
Gallery
Cover up and don't be too Latin: French travel warnings for the US
Society
Macholand: The online uprising against sexism in France
Gallery
In pictures: The daily life of the 2,000 migrants in Calais
Culture
Erotic promo video earns the Musée d'Orsay our "Only in France" award
International
'I love the UK, but I could die getting there': Struggles of Calais migrants
National
Seven reasons why everyone should work in a bar in France
National
The cost of expat home comforts: How France compares to Europe
International
Why don't Calais migrants stay in France? The Local went to find out
National
What are the pros and cons of working as an au pair in France?
Society
Is France's generous welfare state about to get a little stingier?
Gallery
Extraordinary images of ordinary life in the poor Paris suburbs
Gallery
10 things expats love and loathe about life in France
National
So why don't many women in France breastfeed?
National
'Stop bashing La Belle France' - French PM tells UK press
International
UK warns Brits of 'high threat' from terrorism' in France
National
VIDEO: 'The Kama Sutra is not a dirty little text'
National
What Rome could teach Paris and vice versa
Gallery
What do foreign countries warn their citizens about when visiting France?
Gallery
IN IMAGES: Eiffel Tower opens new glass floor above Paris
Society
Is it really better to grow old in the UK and the US rather than France?
Gallery
It's that time if the year again: French sportsmen reveal (almost) all
Gallery
So what do the French find really weird about Anglos?
Travel
Paris museums to open seven days a week but unions are not happy
Culture
Caption contest: What happened when Jay Z met Sark O?
International
This explains why the French never seem to get a sense of déjà vu?
National
VIDEO: Here's a view from the Eiffel Tower you haven't seen before
Travel
Do Paris's iconic rooftops deserve Unesco World Heritage status?
Opinion
'France cannot reform, the pilots' strike showed us this'
National
'We just don’t work hard enough in France.' Is that true?
International
France has moved to beef up security in various public places
National
Hiking naked in France does not come risk-free
Culture
10 French customs that confuse Anglos
National
IN PICTURES: A look inside France's 'most notorious' prison
International
Isis urges killing of 'spiteful, dirty' French
National
Paris installs new device to stop 'love lock' craze
National
Paris cabby dies in vicious high-heel attack
National
'Paris is a sexy city, its beauty is inspiring'
Culture
Depardieu: ‘I drink 14 bottles of booze a day’
National
Top French chefs want banned bird on menu
National
VIDEO: Making of French rugby hunk calendar
National
Ten great bars in Paris only locals know about
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

655
jobs available