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Paris: Feminist Icon And Holocaust Survivor Simone Veil Honoured With Burial At The Panthéon

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| July 1 , 2018 , 15:37 IST

Holocaust survivor and former Health Minister of France Simone Veil known for championing abortion legalization in France is being buried at the Panthéon alongside most revered figures of France like Voltaire, Rousseau, Marie and Pierre Curie, Jean Monnet, Louis Braille, and Victor Hugo.

Veil is the fifth woman to be laid to rest in Paris’s secular mausoleum.

Veil was a survivor of the Nazi concentration camps in Auschwitz. She studied law and got involved in political activities and championing women's rights. She served as the Health Minister of France from 1974-79 during which key laws like the legalization of abortion and giving access to contraception were passed. She played a key and frontal role in getting these laws passed.

Simone Veil was awarded the grand cross of the Légion d’honneur in 2012. She died on June 30th, 2017 at the age of 89. She was buried with full military and national honours. Her death led to a wave of emotion in the country with thousands of people demanding she be buried at the Panthéon alongside France’s most revered citizens.

President Emmanuel Macron while attending her tribute ceremony announced that she would be finally laid to rest at the Panthéon along with her husband Antoine Veil. The President of France has the right to name entrants to the Panthéon.

Simone Veil’s casket has been kept at the Paris Holocaust Museum to allow people to pay respect to the icon.