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A bust in memory of Simone Veil welcomed to the National Assembly

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In tribute to the Minister

Tuesday, November 29, a bronze sculpture representing the bust of Simone Veil, who died at 89, will be inaugurated in the French Parliament. It is there that the Minister of Health Valéry Giscard d’Estaing defended the law relating to the voluntary termination of pregnancy, in 1974 (before its promulgation in January 1975). A ceremony will notably bring together the President of the National Assembly, Yaël Braun-Pivet, the former Minister Jean-Louis Debré and the sons of Simone Veil, Jean and Pierre-François, before the work is installed in the Jardin des Quatres -Columns.

In homage to the European

In 2021, the Foundation for Strasbourgwhich supports educational, cultural and historical projects linked to the Alsatian capital, decides to have eight bronze busts of Simone Veil made, with the help of private donations and the European community of Alsace (for a total cost of €240,000).

Read also Article reserved for our subscribers Law on voluntary termination of pregnancy: the loneliness of Simone Veil

The president of the foundation, Jean-Louis de Valmigère, author with Eva Wernert of The Wonderful Story of Simone Veil (Editions Hervé Chopin, 2022), inaugurated on July 5 the very first bust in the European Parliament, which Simone Veil chaired from 1979 to 1982. “We wanted to show which European, which politician, which woman was this great witness of the XXe century “, he points out.

In tribute to its history

The objective of the Foundation for Strasbourg is to offer the eight sculptures by Simone Veil “to all the places that mattered” for her. After the European Parliament and the National Assembly, the other busts will be inaugurated over the next two years: in Strasbourg (the city will have one in addition to that of the Parliament), in Nice (where she was born), at the Shoah Memorial , at the French Academy (where she sat), at the Pantheon (where she is buried). The eighth and last sculpture should find its place in the concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, in Poland, where it was deported in 1944.

In homage to his personality

These busts are the work of the Franco-Greek sculptress Sissy Piano, 63, who lives in Marseille. Chosen from a dozen participants in the competition organized by the Strasbourg Foundation, she says she felt “touched by the soul” by Simone Veil. “I immersed myself in images, readings and biographies in order to capture his personality. » Member of the jury, Jean Veil, son of Simone, was very moved when he recognized his mother’s gaze in the model proposed by the artist. “The sculpture is so like what it was, he confides. The bust is consistent with his physical features and character. I was proud to tell myself that it was my mother. »

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers Simone Veil and her sisters, “a part of the national story”

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