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Irish abortion referendum: PM Varadkar to campaign for change

January 27, 2018 6:20 pm

The Prime Minister of Ireland has told the BBC he will campaign for the country’s near-total ban on abortion to be liberalized.

Leo Varadkar had previously said the laws were “too restrictive”.

A referendum will take place this summer on whether to repeal a constitutional amendment that effectively bans pregnancy terminations.

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The wording of the referendum question is yet to be decided.

Ireland’s eighth amendment places the right to life of an unborn child on a par with that of a mother, meaning abortion is banned even when the pregnancy is the result of rape or when the foetus has a fatal abnormality.

Campaigners have long called for the laws to be changed, and last year a Citizens’ Assembly and a cross-party parliamentary committee both recommended removing the ban.

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