Here's why the French government has FINALLY banned incest!

'Whatever the age, you don’t have sexual relations with your father, your son or your daughter,' said Adrien Taquet, Secretary of State for Children

                            Here's why the French government has FINALLY banned incest!
French President Emmanuel Macron government is planning to ban incest for the first time since 1791 (Photo by Andy Buchanan - Pool/Getty Images)

The French government brought in legislation making it an offense to have a sexual relationship with a close relative who is under 18 after a series of scandals. Prior to this move, incest was legal in France unless children were involved. With the plan to ban incest for first time since 1791, France will be in line with most other European countries. 

Adrien Taquet, Secretary of State for Children stated French government is planning to criminalise incestuous relationships. Taquet said: "Whatever the age, you don’t have sexual relations with your father, your son or your daughter." He added, "It is not a question of age, it is not a question of consenting adults. We are fighting against incest. The signals must be clear."


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Cousins would still be allowed to marry, however, ministers are yet to confirm whether stepfamilies would be included. "The law is to issue clear prohibitions in society: incest is prohibited," said Taquet in an interview with ATP. The move to ban incest was welcomed by Laurent Boyet, chairman of child protection charity, who said it was important that incest was "legally forbidden" as much as it is already "socially forbidden".

Crimes including incest, blasphemy and sodomy were removed from the statute book in 1791 due to legacy of the French Revolution. The subject incest was taboo in France until last year when one of France's most prominent political commentator, Olivier Duhamel was accused of the sexual abuse of his stepson.

Duhamel, 70, described the 'incest' allegations as 'personal attacks'. In the book 'La Familia grande' that shocked French intellectual circles, Duhamel's stepdaughter Camille Kouchner, accused her stepfather abusing her twin brother for two years from the age of 14. Kouchner said she chose to write the book, 'La Familia grande' because she could "no longer be silent". 

Camille and her twin brother are the children of France's former foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner and academic, Evelyne Pisier. After separation, Pisier went on to marry Duhamel. 

Apart from Duhamel scandal, there were other scandals that have brought the attention of the French government to legislate a law to ban incest. Vanessa Springora, publisher accused prize-winning writer, Gabriel Matzneff of abusing her while she was a minor in a book published in January 2020. Film star, Adele Haenel accused director Christophe Ruggia of sexually harassing her when she was in her early teens in November 2019. 

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