Three Irish women are to take their cases to the United Nations this week after they were forced to travel to Britain for abortions when told their babies would not survive outside the womb.
The women have enlisted the help of the New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights to fight their case according to the Irish Times.
The three, all members of the Terminations for Medical Reasons group, will hold a press conference in Dublin on Wednesday along with representatives from the New York organisation.
The report says the three women will allege that the fact they were forced to leave Ireland to terminate their pregnancies amounted to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.
The paper says Arlette Lyons, Ruth Bowie and Amanda Mellet will call on the UN to put pressure on Ireland to legalise abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormality.
The Doctors for Choice group in Ireland is also supporting their action.
The New York based Center for Reproductive Rights uses the law ‘to advance reproductive freedom as a fundamental human right that all governments are legally obligated to protect, respect, and fulfil’ according to the report in the Irish Times.
The paper adds that three women first told their stories publicly in The Irish Times last year when they revealed how they had had much-wanted pregnancies but how, having been given the news that their unborn babies would not survive after being born, made the decision to terminate their pregnancies.
They could not have the terminations carried out in Ireland as abortion was, and remains, illegal in all circumstances except where there is a real and substantial threat to the life of the mother.
Bowie said in the 2012 interview: “The system should wrap its arms around you, instead it turns its back on you. It’s hard to rationalise this in a country where you can turn off someone’s life support.”
The women say this is the next step in their campaign to change the law to include women such as them.
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