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France

French government resubmits controversial family law

Former family minister Dominique Bertinotti, whose first draft of the law was dropped
Former family minister Dominique Bertinotti, whose first draft of the law was dropped AFP

France's government said on Tuesday it would reopen parliamentary debates next week over a controversial family law that was suspended last month. The opposition UMP said the bill was poorly written and should not be passed.

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The Socialist government has already backed down on one controversial passage, stirring passions that coloured last year's long public campaigns for and against gay marriage.

The first version of this new bill was scrapped in February after opponents claimed it would allow medically assisted procreation for same-sex couples.

The current proposal is a scaled-down version of that bill but it's still being met with fierce resistance.

One of its most contested measures would allow children of separated parents to have two primary residences.

The government says this would be helpful for stepfathers or stepmothers, while critics insist it would be detrimental to children.

Many loopholes in the draft law became apparent in May, after four days of debates examined less than half of the 700 proposed amendments, the vast majority from the right-wing opposition.

Some critics put it down to poor writing, while others view the proposals as threats to a traditional family structure.
 

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