Urgent attention should be given to introducing legislation to clarify what rights and obligations apply to polygamous families living in Ireland, a Supreme Court judge has said.

The comment by Mr Justice Frank Clarke was made in a ruling where the court found that the first marriage of a Muslim man who had married two women in Lebanon, as is allowed there, was a valid marriage in Irish law.

The second marriage, the court ruled, could not be recognised here but that did not compel the State to "deny all legal effect to polygamous marriages in all contexts".

The man and his two wives, and a number of children by both women, all live in the State.

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