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Ireland is facing pro-life protests and abortion doctor shortages as it crafts legislation to regulate legal abortion in 2019.
The Catholic country saw protests outside of its Galway hospital, which now offers elective abortion services to women up to 12 weeks pregnant.
Ireland - President - Regulation - Termination - Pregnancy
Ireland’s president signed the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill on Dec. 20, following a May referendum to overturn the nation’s 18th Amendment prohibiting abortion.
The first week of 2019 in Ireland was marked by legal abortion and accompanying protests in the Catholic-turned-progressive nation.
Protest - Hospital - Galway - Media - Attention
A pro-life protest at a hospital in Galway garnered widespread media attention after advocates surrounded the facility with signs reading, “Say no to abortion in Galway,” and “Real doctors don’t terminate their patients,” The New York Times reported.
Abortion was illegal in Ireland, until citizens voted to legalized abortion in a nation-wide referendum on May 26. “What we have seen today is a culmination of a quiet revolution that has been taking place in Ireland for the past 10 or 20 years,” Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said following the referendum.
President - Michael - Higgins - Bill - Law
Irish President Michael Higgins signed the bill into law on Dec. 20.
The Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill allows elective abortions up to 12 weeks in pregnancy, with exceptions for cases where the mother’s life is endangered by continuing the pregnancy or where the baby will be born with a fatal abnormality.
Bill - October - Review - Legislation - Years
The bill was first introduced in October and has been amended to include a review of the legislation three years after its implementation, BBC reported. The bill was originally slated to undergo review five years post-implementation.
Following protests at the Galway private hospital, calls erupted from pro-abortion advocates for protective zones to be implemented around clinics and hospitals.
Message - Access - Message
“It’s about generally sending a message about access, sending a message that it’s no longer permissible to stigmatize and intimidate...
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