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vigil

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In response to the papal visit this weekend, those impacted by the discovery made at the Tuam Mother and Babies Home will gather in peaceful vigil. 

Survivors of the home and relatives of infants found on the grounds will host their vigil at the same time as the papal Mass in Phoenix Park.

The vigil will be held in Galway on August 26th. 

'Pope Francis needs to make a public statement saying he is sorry for what was done in the name of the church in the past, rather than meeting victims in private,' Historian Catherine Corless told The Irish Times.

Ms Corless worked tirelessly to trace the death certificates of 796 who resided at the Tuam site.

'I cannot see what the problem is with a public statement of apology.'

Last year, significant numbers of human remains were found in what appeared to be a septic waste unit at the site. 

'These remains involved a number of individuals with age-at-death ranges from approximately 35 foetal weeks to 2-3 years,” said The Mother and Baby Homes Commission of Investigation.

'Radiocarbon dating of the samples recovered suggest that the remains date from the timeframe relevant to the operation of the Mother and Baby Home. The homes ran from 1925 to 1961.'

The site had been undergoing excavations to investigate sub surface anomalies that were considered worthy of investigation.

Feature image: Niall Carson.

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The family of a Japanese man who died in a fatal stabbing in Dundalk last week have thanked the people of Ireland for their 'warmth' and 'kindness'.

Yosuke Sasaki was killed in the vicious and random attack which occurred shortly before 9am on Wednesday, January 3.

Originally from Ebina, west of Tokyo, the 24-year-old had been living in Dundalk, Co. Louth, where he worked in a call centre.

Hundreds of people gathered for a candlelit vigil in Market Square in the town last night in memory of Yosuke.

A heartbreaking statement was issued by the Japanese embassy on behalf of the Sasaki family:

"We would like to express our sincere gratitude for the kindness the people of Ireland have shown.

"When he was alive, our son spoke about the warmth of the people of this town and his love of Dundalk.

"He came to Ireland initially as a language student and only intended a short stay. However, he was touched by the kindness of the Irish people, and he decided to work here.

"As a family, we are truly saddened by what has happened, but we hope that this incident will not give Japanese people a bad impression of Ireland.

"We would like to give our heartfelt thanks to the ambulance personnel, the Gardaí, National Pen Limited, Mr Oliver Morgan who set up the GoFundMe page, the staff of the Embassy of Japan, and the members of Louth County Council who organised tonight’s candlelight vigil.

"Finally, we hope that a tragic event like this one will never happen in this country again.

The Sasaki Family"

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This Saturday, October 28, marks the fifth anniversary of Savita Halappanavar's death – an event which serves as a tragic reminder of the “watertight medical rationale” for legalising abortion in Ireland.

The Coalition to Repeal the Eight Amendment is organising a vigil at 4pm on Saturday outside the GPO on O'Connell Street, Dublin 1.

Announcing details of the vigil today, Ailbhe Smyth, Convenor of the Coalition, said: “The medical rationale for abortion is watertight. In cases like Savita’s, abortion saves lives.”

“As we’re marking the fifth anniversary of Savita’s very sad death, an Oireachtas Committee is considering what should be done about the Eighth Amendment.  The Committee has heard from leading experts on maternity healthcare in recent weeks.  Their opinion was unequivocal: if it weren’t for the Eighth Amendment, Savita Halappanavar would be alive today.”

“For once in Ireland, we need to take on board the lessons from our past.  We need to ensure that no more women die in the sort of tragic circumstances experienced by Savita Halappanavar.”

For those who do not live in Dublin, but would like to attend, there are over 20 additional vigils taking place across the country.

All vigils will be silent and those in attendance are invited to bring flowers and candles if they wish.

For more information, click here.

The Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment is an alliance of over 100 organisations including human rights, feminist and pro-choice organisations, trade unions, health organisations, NGOs, community organisations and many others.

Its members agree that the Eight Amendment must be repealed in order to the lives of women in Ireland.

Feature Image: Twitter 

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