France to examine family reform measures

Paris, Feb 7: French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault Thursday said the government was “ready to examine without delay” some measures of the controversial bill of family reforms that sparked massive protests in the country.

“There are specific issues that are on the agenda. Parliament will examine them and the government is quite prepared to do so without delay,” Xinhua quoted Ayrault as saying on the state-run TV channel France2.

“I guarantee to go on reforms. They also apply to the family,” he added.

Accusing the Socialists of “family-phobia”, over 100,000 protesters Sunday demonstrated in Paris and in Lyon to express their refusal of the gay-friendly reforms set to legalise assisted procreation for lesbian couples and surrogate motherhood for gay men who wanted to adopt children.

Following street protests, the government retreated on family reforms and postponed the update of its family law by the end of 2014. However, Socialist lawmakers insisted to amend the planned bill to define the legal rights of step-parents in second marriages and adoption.

“There are reactionary forces in our country. If I have a call to do… it will be to the forces of progress,” Ayrault said.

IANS