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Ireland to vote on removing blasphemy as an offence

Ireland recently held a referendum on legalising abortion. The new referendum to remove blasphemy as an offence will probably be held on the same day as the presidential election.



Dublin: Ireland will hold a referendum in October to remove the offence of blasphemy from its constitution, Charlie Flanagan, the justice and equality minister, has said.


The Irish government has approved the preparation of a bill to remove blasphemy as part of a commitment to constitutional reforms. The referendum will probably be held on the same day as the presidential election.


Government ministers see last month’s abortion referendum as a milestone on a path to change for a country that was one of Europe’s most socially conservative a few decades ago, and are keen to push forward with other constitutional reforms.


After the blasphemy referendum, a vote on a controversial reference in the constitution to a “woman’s life within the home” is likely. “In terms of Ireland’s international reputation, this is an important step,” Flanagan said.


“By removing this provision from our constitution, we can send a strong message to the world that laws against blasphemy do not reflect Irish values and that we do not believe such laws should exist.”


Source: The Guardian

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