Catholic Primate to attend anti-abortion rally in Dublin

‘No law, no legislation can make it right to take the life of a child’

Archbishop Eamon Martin will be joined by  Carol Nolan TD and Trevor Hayes, consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny, at the anti-abortion rally. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Archbishop Eamon Martin will be joined by Carol Nolan TD and Trevor Hayes, consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny, at the anti-abortion rally. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

 

Catholic Primate Archbishop Eamon Martin is to join thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators at the annual Rally for Life in Dublin.

Among those taking part will be Carol Nolan TD, who resigned from Sinn Féin in June of last year over its stance on abortion, and Trevor Hayes, consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny.

Prior to the rally, Bishop of Elphin Kevin Doran will celebrate Mass at St Saviour’s Church on Dominic Street in Dublin.

Niamh Uí Bhriain, one of the organisers of the event, said the rally was intended to show that, despite the removal of the Eighth Amendment from the Constitution last year, “no law, no legislation can make it right to take the life of a child”. She described as “shameful” what had taken place in Ireland since abortion was made available.

“Ireland is now where Britain was in 1967 and and the US in 1973” on abortion. People would continue to campaign “for removal of the Thirty Sixth Amendment” as they had for insertion of the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution in 1983, she said.

The issue “won’t go away”, she said.

‘Endless scrutiny’

Meanwhile, anti-abortion campaigners intended subjecting the current abortion regime in Ireland to “endless scrutiny”, Ms Uí Bhriain said. An example was their demand that the “horrific” misdiagnosis case in the National Maternity Hospital recently should be investigated.

The hospital has already commissioned a review of the case, in which a termination was carried out for reasons of fatal foetal abnormality, where a test later showed no abnormality was present.

She said Minister for Health Simon Harris had been warned such cases might happen, “but he would not listen”.

Ms Uí Bhriain said “the blame lies squarely with Simon Harris”.

She also said reports that the Conservative party leadership candidate Jeremy Hunt favours restrictions on abortion in the UK to 12 weeks were to be welcomed. She said she saw this news as a possible indicator that resistance to abortion may now be growing in the UK.

Polls in the UK “ found that people find late-term abortion unpalatable”, she said. However, she also described Mr Hunt’s stance as “surprising” since “most Conservatives really don’t care” about the issue.