An anti-abortion street protest is to take place in Derry tomorrow.
It’s been organised by Aontú, the new all-Ireland political party, and aims to highlight the “imposition of an extreme abortion regime by English, Scottish and Welsh Members of Parliament on the north of Ireland”.
Aontú says that, by legislating in the area of abortion, which is recognised as a devolved issue, Westminster has acted in contravention of the Good Friday Agreement.
Aontú member of Derry & Strabane Council, Dr. Anne McCloskey, says Westminster politicians “misused” a bill dealing with the timing of elections to force an unrelated abortion amendment through both Houses at Westminster.
Dr McCloskey, who is deputy leader of Aontú, says this legislation will result in the ending of all legal protections for “the smallest and most defenceless fellow humans - the unborn”.
“Abortion law is a devolved issue,” she says. “This legislation severely undermines the Good Friday Agreement and makes a mockery of any semblance of commitment on London’s part to devolution.”
“If Westminster’s abortion legislation comes into effect on October 22, as feared, the north of Ireland will go from being one of the safest places for babies in the womb to one of the most dangerous.”
According to Dr McCloskey, abortion disproportionately affects the poor, ethnic minorities, the disabled and those who have low socio-economic supports.
“Abortion not only takes the lives of the youngest, it has significant physical and psychological consequences for mothers also,” she says. “Abortion reduces pressure on the establishment to provide structural, social and material supports for mothers and pits women against the next generation.”
Aontú’s position, she says, is that the right to life is the most fundamental human right of all - “without which all other rights are meaningless.”
Saturday’s protest takes place at 1pm at Foyleside.