Ireland’s abortion referendum: the “Yes” won

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Friday 25th, a referendum was held in Ireland, concerning the reformation of the current abortion law, known as “The Eight Amendment”.

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​Ireland was, and still is, one of the most religious countries in Europe. So, it isn’t a surprise that its abortion rules were still some of the toughest in Europe.

The current legislation only allows abortion if the woman’s life is at risk. Other situations, such as rape or a dead/malformed foetus, aren’t taken into account.

The Eight Amendment, written in the Constitution since 1983, recognized the equal rights to life, of both the child and mother, thus banning abortions.

The referendum, being pushed for years by the “Yes” side, asking for a reform, was held Friday. Some controversy surrounded this vote, as Google banned ads paid by the “No” side, raising the question of interference from private companies on public matters.

The “Yes” side won by an overwhelming 66.4%. It’ll now be possible to modify legislation, so women don’t have to travel outside of Ireland to abort. The plan is to allow terminations up to the 12th week of pregnancy, without restrictions, as it is the case in most European countries, as well as in the situation there’s a risk for the mother or the foetus.

The total turnout was 64.1%. Hundreds of Irish citizens flew from outside their country to be able to vote, showing how important this event was to some people.