France Declares Abortion a Constitutional Right, Becomes First Country to Do So

France made a significant stride in abortion rights by declaring it a constitutional right on Monday (March 4), becoming the first country in the world to do so. Members of the French parliament amended the 1958 constitution, granting women complete freedom to make decisions regarding abortion. The amendment received 780 votes in favor and only 72 against.

According to BBC reports, French President Emmanuel Macron hailed this decision as a message to the entire world. However, anti-abortion groups have strongly criticized this constitutional change. Meanwhile, supporters of abortion rights gathered in Paris to praise the decision.

This amendment marks the 25th modification since 2008 in modern France’s constitution. People gathered at the Eiffel Tower chanting slogans such as “My Body, My Right” to express their support.

“Nobody Else Can Decide for You”
Before the voting on the amendment to establish abortion as a constitutional right, French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal stated in parliament that the right to abortion was in danger and depended on the mercy of decision-makers. He emphasized that they were sending a message to all women that they have the right over their bodies, and no one else can decide on their behalf.

Opponents in parliament accused President Macron of using the constitution for political gains. Critics argue that this constitutional amendment is inherently flawed and unnecessary. They accused President Macron of promoting leftist ideologies through this move.

France’s constitutional changes come at a time when in 2022, the US Supreme Court ended abortion rights. Following the decision of the US Supreme Court, individual states can now impose bans on abortion at their own levels. This decision has resulted in the termination of abortion rights for millions of women.