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France marks national day of the abolition of slavery

Screengrab, France 24 | French President Emmanuel Macron pays tribute to victims of the slave trade on May 10, 2019, in Paris.

French President Emmanuel Macron led a ceremony on Friday morning in Paris to commemorate the national day of the abolition of slavery and pay tribute to victims of the slave trade.

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France commemorates the national day of the abolition of slavery on May 10. The day is meant to honour the memory of victims of the slave trade and promote reflection on a dark period in France’s history, one long suppressed in the nation’s collective consciousness.

The date for the observance was chosen by former president Jacques Chirac and also corresponds with the French Parliament's adoption of the Taubira Law “recognising the transatlantic black slave trade and slavery” on May 10, 2001.

To watch President Emmanuel Macron's full speech from the Luxembourg Gardens, click on the video player above.

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