Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

The Tour de France, a PR machine

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Coverage of the third plane crash in one week - from France, Algeria and Burkina Faso

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Coverage of the plane crash that took 116 lives - almost half of them French

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: A Truce At All Costs?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville ceasefire talks deliver fragile deal

Read more

FOCUS

Sluggish tourist season in Crimea

Read more

ENCORE!

Bartabas : Mixing Christ with Spanish music and dancing horses

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

  • Live: ‘No survivors’ from Algerian plane crash, says Hollande

    Read more

  • French families grieve for Algerian plane crash victims

    Read more

  • Protest against Gaza offensive turns deadly in West Bank

    Read more

  • Ukraine names acting PM after Yatseniuk's shock resignation

    Read more

  • Deadly strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • Wreckage of Algeria plane found in Mali

    Read more

  • BNP to pay $80 million for defrauding Dept of Agriculture

    Read more

  • Pope meets Christian woman sentenced to death in Sudan

    Read more

  • Air Algérie crash: 'We should eliminate the missile hypothesis'

    Read more

  • Italy’s Nibali cruises to victory in 18th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • US, European agencies lift travel restrictions to Tel Aviv

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

France

France’s first lady crashes gay wedding debate

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2012-12-04

While the debate over a proposed bill to legalise gay marriage rages on in France, first lady Valérie Trierweiler announced Tuesday that she would happily serve as a witness for a same-sex wedding ceremony as soon as the law is on the books.

French first lady Valérie Trierweiler has stamped her personal seal of approval on plans to legalise gay marriage, telling French media that she would serve as a witness at one of the first such ceremonies in the country.

Known for her tenacious independent streak, Trierweiler has waded into what has become a subject of passionate debate in France.

"I'm delighted that I'm going to be a witness at one of the very first marriages for all," the first lady told RTL radio on Tuesday, referring to the bill that the ruling Socialist government has dubbed the “Marriage and Adoption For All” law.

Trierweiler, who is the longtime partner of, but not married to, President François Hollande, said she had already accepted invitations to participate in two future weddings for gay friends.

Hollande appears determined to push through his campaign promise of extending marriage and adoption rights to same-sex couples, but he has faced at times bitter opposition from Catholic bishops and opposition groups.

On November 19, thousands marched in Paris and in most of France’s big cities to protest the Socialist-backed legislation.

The following day,  opponents of same-sex marriage clashed with members of the Ukrainian Femen movement, with several of the pro-gay marriage women hit, kicked and sprayed with Mace.

Hollande attempted to appease opponents late last month by saying mayors would not be forced to preside over same-sex marriages if they went against their personal beliefs, but then quickly backtracked on the idea after facing a new round of criticism.

The leader of the main opposition UMP party, Jean-François Copé, has called on supporters to participate in a nationwide rally against the proposed bill on January 13.

That prompted Paris city Mayor Bertrand Delanoë, who is gay, to call for a rally in support of same-sex marriage on January 16 in the French capital.

Hollande's cabinet approved the draft bill on November 7 and debate on the proposal is set to begin in the first week of February at the National Assembly, France's lower house.

 

Date created : 2012-12-04

  • FRANCE

    ‘Europe’s first gay-friendly mosque’ sparks controversy

    Read more

  • CINEMA

    French documentary on gay seniors strikes timely chord

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Mayor backs down from gay wedding after threats

    Read more

COMMENT(S)