Warning of a return to an era of 'infanticide'
A warning against a return to an era of "illegal backstreet abortions and infanticide" will be made before the Oireachtas Committee on abortion today.
Professor Anthony McCarthy, consultant psychiatrist at the National Maternity Hospital, will make the point that "in an ideal world" abortion "would never be needed or requested" but it's not possible to "wish abortion away".
He will say that abortion has been a "part of the history of every country, including Ireland".
The committee will also hear that 3.5pc of women of childbearing age have an abortion each year globally, which represents a 'slight' decline over the past 25 years.
A report to be presented by Dr Gilda Sedgh, from the Guttmacher Institute which researches health and reproductive rights in the US, will reveal that 56 million abortions took place each year in 2010 to 2014.