Laurence Rossignol sparked a row after she appeared on French TV and criticised fashion brands that market hijabs as 'irresponsible'.
The French president, on a tour of Caribbean islands, paid homage to slaves and their sacrifices at the memorial, the first of its kind on French soil.
Organisation attacks the 'crucial role' played by the banking industry in propping up slavery in France as nation marks Slavery Remembrance Day.
A handful of right-wing French politicians have threatened to mar the commemoration, equating the day to a form of 'self-flagellation'.
Justice minister backs land reform to help descendents of slaves, two days after President Hollande declared reparations for slavery impossible.