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Niall Horan Calls for Ireland to ‘Do Right by the Great Women of Our Nation’ in Abortion Referendum

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Former One Direction band member Niall Horan has lent his support to the Yes campaign fighting to repeal the eighth amendment of the Republic of Ireland’s constitution and legalize abortion in a referendum taking place Friday.

In a tweet which received more than 26,000 likes within an hour of it being posted, Horan encouraged the people of his native country to head to the polls and vote. “Cmon Ireland ! This is your day to make another great decision. Please do right by the great women of our nation,” he wrote.

Horan, who has more than 40 million Twitter followers, has generally refrained from publicizing his views on the abortion referendum debate and other political issues. Many Twitter users seemed surprised to see him weigh into such a polarized issue.

“Thank you so much for using your platform and tweeting about this,” responded one. “Thank you I don’t think you understand how much this means that you’ve tweeted about this,” added another. It is unlikely that Horan himself will be able to vote in the referendum as he has been living abroad, between London and Los Angeles, for more than 18 months.

Horan is not the only celebrity who has added their voice to the Yes campaign fighting to #repealtheeighth. Despite not being Irish citizens, Emma Watson, Russell Crowe, Chelsea Handler and Courtney Cox are among the scores of stars who have made their opinions known.

The May 25 referendum, announced in September by Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, will determine whether or not Ireland repeals its constitution’s eighth amendment, which gives an unborn fetus and its mother “an equal right to life.” A Yes vote will pave the way for more liberal legislation.

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Write to Kate Samuelson at kate.samuelson@time.com