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IFPA Responds to Declaration by the European Court of Human Rights on D. v Ireland

By July 4, 2006News

Release date: 05 July 2006

The Irish Family Planning Association has said that today’s declaration by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in relation to the ‘D Case’ was a disappointing outcome, particularly for the applicant.

It said that other women – who have travelled abroad for termination after a diagnosis of foetal anomaly incompatible with life – may also be disappointed with the decision.

The ECHR declared that the case was inadmissible based on a view that domestic remedies had not been exhausted prior to a complaint being lodged to their Court.

In April 2005, the IFPA lodged an amicus brief in support of the applicant’s complaint. The amicus pointed out to the ECHR that Ireland's abortion laws violate the Convention on Human Rights because they have such a profoundly harmful effect on women, such as D.

In August 2005, the IFPA facilitated a challenge to the ECHR by three women living in Ireland. The basis of their complaint is significantly different from that made by ‘D’.

Their complaint centres around four Articles of the European Convention on Human Rights. These include Article 8 with regard to the right of privacy in all family, home and personal interests, and entitlement to no public interference from any public authority in exercising this right; Article 3 which protects individuals from ‘inhuman or degrading treatment’; Article 2 which affords protection of the law to safe-guard the life of an individual and Article 14 which affords rights and freedoms without discrimination on any grounds.

The IFPA does not view today’s declaration by the ECHR as having a significant implication on this complaint.