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AOH to introduce pro-life charter

Tyrone AOH president Gerry McGeough says a pro-life charter to be introduced this weekend will ensure "that there is no ambiguity" on the issue
Connla Young

Members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) in Co Tyrone are being asked to sign a pro-life charter or face disciplinary action.

The charter is expected to be revealed at a meeting of the Tyrone County Board this weekend.

The conservative Catholic organisation includes members of Sinn Féin who will attend the party's Ard Fheis in Dublin this weekend where it is expected a vote supporting the repeal of the Eight Amendment in the south will be passed.

Any repeal of the amendment could clear the way for abortion to be introduced there.

It is believed that several Sinn Féin members in Tyrone are also involved with the AOH.

Delegates attending this weekend's Tyrone County Board meeting will be asked to sign on behalf of the county's 12 divisions.

The charter states they are "totally opposed to the introduction of any laws or legislation that will lead to the provision of abortion in any part of Ireland”.

“Furthermore, we oppose any change to the Eighth Amendment in the 26-County Constitution,” it says.

“There can be no justification for killing children.”

It is understood that anyone who refuses to sign the charter will be viewed as ‘Hibernians not in good standing' and could face disciplinary proceedings.

The charter, which is being spearheaded by the Tyrone Hibernians, has the approval of the Board of Erin, the national executive of the AOH.

Tyrone AOH president Gerry McGeough said the charter is in line with Catholic teaching.

"This charter is being introduced in order to ensure that there is no ambiguity in this matter and the AOH is fully in line with Catholic teaching on the issue,".

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