The government's decision to order a pharmaceutical company to resume supplying an abortion pill over protests by anti-abortion groups stirred a heated debate on the French left and right Saturday.

Prime Minister Michel Rocard's Socialist Party praised Health Minister Claude Evin for ordering the company Roussel Uclaf Friday to resume marketing of the experimental drug called RU-486, which officials say is 95 percent effective in inducing abortions in pregnant women.The company began marketing the product this week but halted distribution Wednesday in the face of boycott threats by anti-abortion groups.