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Metro station renamed in honour of Simone Veil

The Europe station to be renamed in honour of politician who survived Nazi concentration camps and who later played a key role in legalising abortion in France

A Metro station in Paris is to be renamed in honour of one of France's greatest female politicians.

President of the Ile-de-France region, Valérie Pécresse announced that the Europe station, on Line 3, will be called Europe-Simone Veil in honour of the former health minister and President of the European Parliament.

Simone Veil, who died in June 2017 aged 89, is to enter the Panthéon mausoleum later this year, following Germaine Tillion, Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz, Marie Curie, and Sophie Berthelot, to become only the fifth woman to be so honoured in death.

She played a key role in legalising abortion in France in 1975, and facilitating access to oral contraceptives. She became known in later years for her work in remembering the Holocaust, and, as an Auschwitz-Birkenau and Bergen-Belsen concentration camp survivor, became the first ever president of the Shoah Memory Foundation from 2000 to 2007.

She also worked to introduce a ban on smoking in public places, and improve access to healthcare in rural and underserved areas across the country.

The Panthéon is a secular mausoleum, and houses the remains of iconic, national figures from French politics, culture, society, and history. High-profile figures remembered and/or buried there include Voltaire, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Emile Zola, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, and Alexandre Dumas.

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