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Tuesday 29 July 2014

Poignant tributes left at Leinster House to mark the deaths of 796 babies

Nicola Anderson and Caroline Crawford

Published 11/06/2014|22:29

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Teddies, babygros and children's shoes were amongst poignant tributes left at the gates of Leinster House during a candlelit vigil marking the deaths of the 796 babies who died at a mother and baby home in Tuam.

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One message inked on a tiny babygro read: "For the babies we hold in our hearts and not in our arms."

A march took place from outside the Department for Children on Mespil Road under banners demanding justice, while earlier, two seven year old girls, Dasha Dlyaritskaya-Hilliard and Juliette Bruce Merzouk from Dublin delivered a petition to Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald urging the Government to escalate investigations into what went on.

Around 250 people turned up for the rally in the capital last night, which began with song and verse before a minute's silence was solemnly observed for the young lives lost.

Meanwhile hundreds of people gathered in silence in Galway last night to express their horror at the deaths of almost 800 children in the Tuam Mother and Baby's home.

Tiny white paper cut-outs of 796 children, starkly labelled by number, were draped along the gates of the children's playground in Eyre Square.

The vigil heard statements read from JP Rodgers, a survivor of the Home, and historian Catherine Corless who discovered the records of the 796 deaths at St Mary’s Mother and Baby home in Tuam. Song and poems were also shared.

Organiser Rachel Donnelly of Galway Pro-Choice received a round of applause when she called for a separation of Church and State in Ireland.

And Cavan Women's Network also organised a candlelit vigil in solidarity with all women who were forced to give their babies up for adoption.

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