Thematic dossier gathering the actions carried out or supported by the Ministry of Culture on the search for the heritage of trafficking and slavery.
4.Memories of trafficking, slavery, abolition.
National Day of Remembrance of Trafficking, Slavery and their Abolition on 9, 10 and 11 May 2012
The National Day of Remembrance of Trafficking, Slavery and Their Abolition was established in 2006 pursuant to Law No. 2001-434 of 21 May 2001 on the recognition of trafficking and slavery as a crime against humanity. Following the announcement made by Jacques Chirac, President of the Republic, on 30 January 2006, Decree No. 2006-388 of 31 March 2006 officially fixed 10 May as the "date of the annual commemoration of the abolition of slavery". Article 2 of the decree states that “each year a ceremony is organized in Paris” while specifying that “a similar ceremony is organized in each metropolitan department at the initiative of the prefect and in the places of remembrance of the slave trade and slavery”. Every 10 May, an official ceremony is organized by the government while a circular reminds prefects of the principle of a commemoration in each department of the hexagon.
In 2011, France paid a solemn tribute to the struggles of slaves in its colonies for the universality of human rights: the President of the Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy, unveiled a stele in the Jardin du Luxembourg, in Paris, with the following inscription: Through their struggles and their deep desire for dignity and freedom, the slaves of the French colonies have contributed to the universality of human rights and to the ideal of Freedom, Equality and Brotherhood that founded our Republic. France pays tribute to them. With the statue Le Cri, l'Ecrit, inaugurated in 2007, this stele completes the memorial site dedicated to the memory of the slave trade, slavery and the struggle for their abolition installed in the heart of Paris, in the garden of Luxembourg that depends on the Senate.For 2012, On the recommendation of the CPMHE, the government has decided to put at the forefront the European memories of trafficking, slavery and the struggle for their abolition on the occasion of the National Day of Memories of Trafficking, Slavery and their Abolition.
In 2012, on the proposal of Committee for the Memory and History of Slavery, France intends to honour the actions taken in the countries that carry the legacies of the transatlantic trade and slavery around the issue of colonial slavery, in the first place but also the struggles for their abolition.
On this occasion, cultural, intellectual, French and European personalities, representatives of major European institutions, diplomatic representatives and personalities of major international organizations, Antonio de ALMEIDA MENDES, historian, for Portugal, Cain ARTWELL, president of NiNsee for the Netherlands, Michael BARRET, curator, Stockholm Museum of Ethnography, for Sweden, Javier LAVIÑA anthropologue, for Spain, Jette SANDAHL, museum director, for Denmark, James WALVIN, historian, for the United Kingdom, and Françoise VERGES, president of the CPMHE, for France.
This ceremony is placed under the high patronage of the President of the Republic which will take place on May 10, 2012 at the Jardin du Luxembourg at 11 am, in the presence of Mr. Jean-Pierre BEL, President of the Senate, and Ms. Marie-Luce PENCHARD, Minister for Overseas Affairs.