The Atlantic

Ireland Repealed Its Abortion Ban. Is Northern Ireland Next?

After Dublin voted overwhelmingly to repeal its near-outright abortion ban, pressure is mounting for Belfast to do the same.
Source: Max Rossi / Reuters

All eyes were on the Republic of Ireland this weekend when it voted resoundingly in favor of repealing its near-total ban on abortion. In the days since, some of that attention has turned to Northern Ireland, where pressure is mounting to change its own restrictive abortion laws.

Though Northern Ireland is a member of the United Kingdom, where abortions are permitted within the first 24 weeks of pregnancy (and later, under exceptional circumstances), U.K. abortion law doesn’t apply in Northern from the U.K.’s Department of Health, 724 women in Northern Ireland traveled to England or Wales for an abortion in 2016.

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