High Court to hear NI abortion law challenge in February

A taxpayer-funded legal bid against Northern Ireland’s abortion law is set to be heard at Belfast’s High Court next month.

The Department of Justice is currently consulting on whether to allow abortion in cases of sexual crime and fatal foetal abnormality.

But the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC) claims that the consultation “does not commit” to making “necessary” changes.


A pro-life organisation and a pro-abortion sexual health group have registered an interest in the case, which is to be heard by Mr Justice Treacy.

The pro-life group called the legal challenge “undemocratic”, and highlighted that the right to life, not to abortion, is enshrined in human rights declarations and conventions.

Mr Justice Treacy listed the case for hearing on 2 February.


A spokesman for the Department of Justice previously said the NIHRC’s legal action was “ill-timed and unnecessary” when it was announced last month.

He said the “correct forum” for the Commission to make its views known is the public consultation, which closes on 17 January 2015.

The Christian Institute has highlighted a number of stories from people affected by the life and death decisions of abortion in its Choose Life series.


These included an account from Gary Moore, who was conceived through rape and is grateful that his mother did not give in to pressure to abort him.

And Bonnie and Phil Walker shared how they chose life for their daughter Grace, who was diagnosed with a fatal foetal abnormality but lived for a “precious” 15 minutes.

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