Friday, December 14, 2018

Irish parliament bill to legalise abortion

The Irish parliament on Thursday passed legislation allowing abortions for the first time, following a landmark referendum earlier this year, a move hailed by PM Leo Varadkar as a “historic moment”.
The new legislation permits terminations to be carried out up to 12 weeks of pregnancy — or in conditions where there is a risk to the life, or of serious harm to the health, of the pregnant woman. It would also allow terminations in cases of foetal abnormality which could lead to the death of the foetus either before or within 28 days of birth. “Historic moment for Irish women. Thanks to all who supported,” said Varadkar, who supported the referendum in May in which 66% voted to overturn a constitutional ban on abortions.
There have been rising number of distressing stories about women unable to get an abortion in Ireland. One of the high-profile cases was that of 31-year-old Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar, who died from blood poisoning after doctors refused her repeated requests for an abortion while she was having a miscarriage at a Galway hospital in 2012. Her death helped “personalise” the debate around abortion, said a legal scholar at Trinity College Dublin.
The change means Malta is now the only EU country to totally ban abortion. 

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