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The Unborn Won the Case



In Ireland, according to the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Act 2013, abortion is only allowed when life of the mother is endangered. But, it also includes situations when the mother is suicidal. Nevertheless, Ireland provides protection to those defenceless creature to a far extent. But, very recently a new ruling improved the situation of those children.

An Irish High Court recently ruled in favour of an unborn child. It held on the 4th August 2016 that according to Irish constitution and its national laws unborn babies have exactly the same rights as those already born. 

In this case a Nigerian man had an Irish partner who was pregnant. Before she got pregnant, in 2008 the state issued a deportation order. He tried to avoid leaving and so he appealed from the decision and he claimed refugee status. Once his partner got pregnant he applied for judicial review of the original decision on the basis that he was fathering a child which was unborn at the time.

Justice Richard Humphries held in this case that the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution which gives protection to unborn babies gives them significant rights under statutory and common law. Those rights are wider than to be born. The judge said that the government considering the deportation of the man should make a decision in the best interests of his unborn child. Therefore, the judicial review was allowed. 

This case was heard in a crucial time when foreign-funded drive to repeal the Eighth Amendment arouse. However, it is unlikely after this ruling.

On the opposite, Pro-Life Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) calls upon the government to repeal the 2013 Act to give full protection to unborn babies. It also fights to avoid any changes to the Eighth Amendment which pro-choice activists desired.
Therefore, based on the court’s decision, the Pro-Life Society claims that: “The killing of unborn children is both unconstitutional and unethical and therefore must not be allowed in Ireland.”