Socialist Worker

Irish abortion law ‘breached rights’

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2508

Protests after the death of Savita Halappanavar in 2012 forced a change in the law - but it wasnt enough

Protests after the death of Savita Halappanavar in 2012 forced a change in the law - but it wasn't enough (Pic: William Murphy Flickr)


Ireland’s government subjected a woman to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment because of its abortion laws, according to the United Nations (UN) human rights committee.

It said the government had violated Amanda Mellet’s human rights by criminalising abortion.

Doctors had told Amanda that the foetus she was carrying in 2011 would die in the womb or shortly after birth.

Yet she was refused an abortion in Ireland and forced to travel to Britain to pay for a private abortion.

The UN committee said this caused severe emotional and mental pain and suffering.

The Irish government now has to compensate her and prevent similar injustices occurring in the future.

Amanda said in a statement, “The Irish government must ensure that other women do not live through similar violations of their rights.

"This cannot happen until abortion is decriminalised.”


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