Irish abortion controversy makes headlines abroad

Guardian editorial says new legislation ‘offers no choice at all ’

The latest abortion controversy in Ireland has made headlines across the Irish sea and across the Atlantic. Here is some of the coverage:

Guardian (Editorial)

Under the headline “the Guardian view on Ireland’s new abortion law: no choice at all” the newspaper’s editorial notes that Ireland’s abortion act “ seems to have made no difference at all”.

The editorial opens by saying that “a vulnerable young woman in Ireland has been forced to give birth by caesarean section, even though she was so desperate for an abortion she was ready to starve to death rather than have the baby.”


The article closes by concluding: “So about 4,000 women a year remain forced to travel to England. For those who cannot, abortion is still all but banned. That surely is one of the most absurd and morally compromising pieces of state hypocrisy in Europe.”

i100 ( from London Independent ) The article under the headline," the Irish government is treating women worse than animals" opens by saying that "campaigners have one response to reports that a suicidal rape victim was refused an abortion in Ireland and then forced to have a caesarean - they are not surprised."

It continues “Mara Clarke, of Abortion Support Network, a charity which raises funds for women in Northern Ireland and Ireland who need to travel for an abortion, told i100 “the Irish government has decided it can treat women worse than animals.”

Jessica Valenti’s comment piece is written under the headline “a pregnant, suicidal rape victim fought Ireland’s new abortion law. The law won”

She opens by writing: “There is one thing that suicidal rape victims need: immediate assistance. But for one young woman in Ireland who was pregnant and seeking an abortion after reportedly being attacked, the only thing her government offered was the slow, bureaucratic violation of her humanity”.

New York Times (Print and Web) (News)

Under the headline “case in which abortion was denied reignites controversy in Irish law”the article opens: “A young woman who was refused an abortion despite claiming to be suicidal and protesting with a hunger strike has had her baby delivered by cesarean section in a case that has reignited the controversy over a relatively new Irish law that allows for abortion in limited circumstances.

The news story looks at the United Nations Human Rights Committee’s recent criticism of Ireland’s abortion law, quotes The National Women’s Council of Ireland calling the case “barbaric” and the Pro-Life campaign saying it highlighed the “horror and deep-seated flaws” in the law.

BBC (News) The website reports that "The "suicidal" woman who gave birth by caesarean section after being refused an abortion in the Republic of Ireland was reportedly a victim of rape."

The Independent (London) (News)

The report says “a woman who sought an abortion in Ireland when she was eight weeks pregnant, saying she was suicidal, was refused and later legally forced to give birth by caesarean section”.

The online story embeds a video of the so-called “lapgate” controversy when TD Tom Collins pulled a female TD Aine Collins onto his lap during the marathon abortion debate.

The news story says that “a young woman has been legally forced to give birth by caesarean section after being denied an abortion in Ireland, in a case experts say exposes flaws in recent reform meant to allow limited terminations.

It later notes : Pro-choice campaigners want to know if the woman concerned was offered the option of an abortion in the UK.