Demonstration in Dublin against the introduction of a very restrictive abortion law in Texas


Protesters gathered in Dublin on Saturday to protest against the highly restrictive abortion law introduced in Texas.

he Irish protest coincided with hundreds of similar protests across the United States.

Texas law effectively prohibits abortion before some women know they are pregnant, and there are no exceptions for rape or incest.

Execution is left only to private citizens, who are entitled to at least US $ 10,000 in damages if they succeed in suing not only the abortion providers, but anyone who helped a woman to have an abortion.

Large crowds gathered in O’Connell Street on Saturday, with protesters carrying placards and placards sending their support for “Dublin to Dallas”.

Ailbhe Smyth, one of the leaders of the campaign that led to the liberalization of Irish abortion law in 2018, told the crowd that Irish people understand the fear many women feel in Texas .

“We understand your struggle. We know your struggle. We are here to do whatever we can. We have been through this and we don’t want it to happen again, ”she said.

Ms Smyth called Texas law an “absolute abomination” and accused Texas of creating a “citizen police state”.

The law was signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in May and came into effect on September 1.

Abortion providers there described Texas clinics that are now at risk of shutting down as neighboring states struggle to cope with a wave of patients who have to drive hundreds of miles from Texas.

Other women, they say, are forced to carry their pregnancies to term.

The Irish electorate voted to repeal the Eighth Amendment in a 2018 referendum, ushering in a major liberalization of Irish abortion law and ending what was in effect a constitutional ban on abortion. abortion.

Ms Smyth, who had campaigned for the removal of the amendment for decades, said campaigners should not be “complacent” about the situation in Ireland.

“Maybe we need to enshrine bodily integrity and the right to it in our constitutions, in our human rights law.

“So maybe it’s time to start campaigning again to have this in our own constitution.

“Because bodily integrity is not only for women, it is for all those, all those who in any way might have their rights impeded in any way by the law. “

Rita Harrold, an abortion rights activist from Dublin, said: “We are here today to send our solidarity to the large number of protests that are going to take place across the United States.

She said people shouldn’t have to travel to access abortion.

“It really has to do with us in Ireland, that people might be forced to do it.”

“Can you imagine how full Irish prisons would be if everyone who gave their friend 50 euros, helped her organize a bus, helped her organize a train, helped her organize a ferry ticket, were in jail right now for all the Irish abortion trips we’ve had.


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