Tuesday 6 December 2016

Abortion law 'an outrage', says wife of President

Laura Larkin

Published 09/05/2016 | 02:30

Sabina Higgins Photo: Maxwells
Sabina Higgins Photo: Maxwells

Sabina Higgins, the wife of President Michael D Higgins, has made a strong intervention in the debate on abortion.

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Ms Higgins believes a pregnant women being made to carry a pregnancy to full term in the case of a fatal foetal abnormality is "an outrage against women".

The issue of fatal foetal abnormality is regarded as the next area where pro-choice campaigners want abortion allowed under the law.

However, permitting an abortion in such circumstances is currently not allowed under the law and would require a Constitutional referendum. Some women currently travel to Britain to have the pregnancy terminated in such cases.

The comments on the sensitive topic come as the new Government has promised to examine the abortion regime.

President Higgins may ultimately be asked to consider legislation in this area.

The President's wife was speaking last week following a debate between midwifery students in Trinity College about whether Ireland's maternity care has realised the ideals of the 1916 leaders outlined in the Proclamation.

In her remarks, Ms Higgins touched on "choice in the abortion and health".

"There has to be the choice that you know that...what do you call it... that foetal abnormality that the person or persons should be made carry you know and sit in you know… these are really outrages against women and outrages against the world and nature," she said.

Her comments are the first time Ms Higgins has spoken publicly on the issue, although she has spoken on gender equality and violence against women.

Irish Independent

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