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26th May 2018

Anti-abortion campaign concedes defeat in historic Irish referendum

Jade Hayden

Save the 8th has released a statement following last night’s exit poll and this morning’s early tallies.

The anti-abortion campaign has said that the expected result of Ireland’s referendum on abortion is “a tragedy of historic proportions” and that “a wrong does not become right simply because a majority support it.”

They said: “The 8th amendment did not create a right to life for the unborn child – it merely acknowledged that such a right exists, has always existed, and will always exist.

“What Irish voters did yesterday is a tragedy of historic proportions. However, a wrong does not become right simply because a majority support it.”

The group’s communication’s director John McGuirk shared the statement this morning.

Early tallies and two separate exit polls show that the ‘Yes’ side is expected to win by a landslide.

RTE’s exit poll showed that 69 percent of people said they voted in favour of repealing the eighth amendment, while the Irish Times’ poll showed 68 percent voted ‘Yes.’

Save the 8th said that going forward they will continue to oppose the legislation around abortion in Ireland.

“If and when abortion clinics are opened in Ireland, because of the inability of the Government to keep their promise about a GP led service, we will oppose that as well,” they said.

“Every time an unborn child has his or her life ended in Ireland, we will oppose that, and make our voices known.”

The Irish Family Planning Association’s (IFPA’s) chief executive Niall Behan said that “the people of Ireland have righted a historic wrong.”

The group have said they are “committed” to providing abortion care in Ireland.

Their statement reads: “The Yes vote ends decades of stigma, shame and silence around abortion and unintended pregnancy. It ends the rejection and abandonment of women by the state.

“The IFPA will continue to support women who experience crisis pregnancies though whatever decision they make. But we now look forward to the time when we can offer them the care they need here in Ireland.”

The official result for the referendum is expected this afternoon.