Biggest-ever Woman’s Right To Choose march
Later this month (October) Prime Minister Enda Kenny will call a citizens’ assembly to advise the government on whether a vote should be held to boost access to abortion.
Thousands of protesters marched in Dublin, and many Irish expatriates joined in demonstrations around the world, last Saturday in an attempt to put pressure on the Irish government to hold a referendum to repeal its abortion laws.
Demonstrators marched in the rain, in the biggest march of its kind ever to be held in Dublin, towards government buildings from O’Connell Street, bringing traffic to a standstill by the River Liffey as they chanted, beat drums and held placards saying “My Body, My Choice”.
A complete ban was only lifted in 2013 when terminations were allowed if a mother’s life was in danger. Last year Ireland became the first country to adopt gay marriage by popular vote.
Ministers in the Fine Gael-led minority government say the earliest date a referendum can be held would be towards the end of next year.
Abortion law in Ireland is set out in the eighth amendment of the constitution.
According to the Abortion Rights Campaign, the eighth amendment is an “archaic and dangerous law”, which “infringes on the human rights of women in Ireland and goes against international human rights norms, and denies access to basic health care, forcing over 154,000 to travel overseas to obtain an abortion since 1980”
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The Repeal the 8th (#Repealthe8th) campaign calls for ” the repeal of the Eighth Amendment to the Irish Constitution so that full reproductive health services, including abortion, can be made available in line with best medical practice, international human rights norms and the will of the majority of people in Ireland.”