Thursday 19 October 2017

Important victory for women of Ireland

As the issue of abortion is likely to be added to the list of items for national discussion after the judgment from the European Court of Human Rights in the case of ABC v Ireland, there are two points of fact that would be useful to clarify any discussion on this matter.

Firstly, the European Court of Human Rights is not an EU court but rather a court of the Council of Europe which is a separate institution from the EU system and does not have the same legal impact.

Secondly, this ruling of the court does not change abortion law in Ireland one bit. What this court ruling says is that we need national legislation in order to clarify Article 40.3.3 of our Constitution on what exactly constitutes a threat to the life of the mother. No referendum is required as we are not changing from our current constitutional position, rather we are clarifying what we have already decided.

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