• May 18, 2018

The placing of a giant ‘NO’ sign by campaigners opposed to abortion in Ireland on the side of Ben Bulben mountain has prompted protest from the Ireland’s National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS).

The sign is 100 foot high and made out of plastic cladding. It has been erected with the landowners permission.

Ireland is due to have a referendum on repealing the eighth amendment to the Irish constitution on May 25th this will if approved clear the way for abortion law reform. Between 2012 and 2016 over 18,000 women from the twenty-six counties travelled to the UK for abortions. The pro and anti abortion debate in the twenty six counties has provoked passionate debate.

NPWS which is part of the Heritage Division of the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, said that the “insinuation of alien materials…onto a special area of conservation is insensitive to its conservation status and incompatible with the habitat”.

It called for the immediate removal of the sign from the mountain so that “Ben Bulben is returned undamaged to its natural and beloved state”.

The iconic mountain is in the heart of ‘Yeats country’ and inspired his poem ‘Under Ben Bulben Head’. The poet is buried at the Church of Ireland graveyard at Drumcliff

Bernard Moffatt

pp Celtic League

May 17th 2018

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