Anti-abortion groups to display graphic images at protests

Displays due to take place on Dame Street in Dublin, and Belfast and Manchester airports

Anti-abortion groups plan to display graphic images of aborted babies at events in Dublin, Belfast and Manchester today.

Three groups say they are organising “public education displays” in response to the recent decision of the British government to pay for abortions for Northern Irish women travelling to England.

The groups say they intend to display large graphic images of aborted babies “to show the humanity of the unborn child and expose the horrific reality of abortion which the abortion industry strives to keep hidden from Irish women travelling to England for the procedure”.

The displays are due to take place on Dame Street in Dublin, and outside Belfast and Manchester airports. The organisers are the Irish Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform (ICBR), Precious Life, which is based in Northern Ireland, and an English group, Abort67.


Plans by the groups to demonstrate at Dublin and Cork airports were scuppered last month when permission was refused by the authorities.

Bernadette Smyth, director of Precious Life, criticised the British government's decision to fund abortions for women travelling from Northern Ireland. "It is outrageous that Britain is riding roughshod over Northern Ireland's democratic process, by funding a procedure that is illegal here."

Ruth Rawlins, a spokeswoman for Abort67, said the decision was "about the abortion industry expanding business and increasing profits off the blood of Irish babies".

The events are part of a “consumer protection initiative” designed to show the reality of abortion, according to Jean-Simonis Engela, director of the ICBR.

Last year, 3,265 women travelled from the Republic to the UK for an abortion, while 724 women travelled from Northern Ireland.

Paul Cullen

Paul Cullen

Paul Cullen is Health Editor of The Irish Times