Exit polls suggest landslide for repeal in Irish abortion referendum
The results of the public vote will be released today
The results of a YES / NO exit poll result announced by Irish TV network RTÉ on Friday night have shown a 69.4% majority for the Yes vote in the Eighth Amendment referendum.
The vote asked people living in Ireland whether they wanted to repeal or retain a part of the constitution which says an unborn child has the same right to life as a pregnant woman.
At present abortion is only allowed where there is a "real and substantial risk" to the life of the mother, but not in cases of rape, incest or fatal foetal abnormality.
The result is in line with a Irish Times poll which was released earlier on Friday night, which predicted a 68% vote in favour of repealing the Eighth Amendment.
In Dublin, 79% of people voted for repeal, according to RTÉ's poll.
The margin for error on both of these exit polls is estimated at +/- 1.5 percent.
Ballot boxes were opened for the first time across the country this morning, with votes from over 6,500 stations being counted by thousands of volunteers.
It is expected the count will be completed by this afternoon with the official result being announced later today in Dublin Castle, following polling stations running across Ireland on Friday from 7am to 10pm.