Almost three quarters of people in Northern Ireland want changes to the region's restrictive abortion laws, according to a new Amnesty International poll.

The survey found 72% wanted abortion permitted in cases of incest and rape - while 67% supported a woman's right to terminate pregnancy when there has been a diagnosis of a fatal foetal abnormality.

Amnesty said the results indicated increasing support for law changes, as a similar poll commissioned by the organisation in 2014 measured the levels of support for abortion in instances of sex crimes and fatal foetal abnormality at 69% and 60% respectively.

Of the 1,000 people surveyed, 58% thought abortion should be decriminalised so there would be no criminal penalty for women who have terminations in Northern Ireland.

A similar proportion - 59% - thought it should be decriminalised so there would be no criminal penalty for doctors and medical staff who assist women to have abortions in Northern Ireland.

The results were published ahead of a petition of 45,000 signatures calling on a law change being handed to Stormont.

Anti-abortion groups are opposed to a relaxation of the law in Northern Ireland and have argued for more support for pregnant woman.

Adrianne Peltz, from Amnesty International in Northern Ireland, said: "These poll findings demonstrate an overwhelming demand for change to Northern Ireland's draconian abortion laws.

"This is not a small margin of support for women's access to abortion, it's a definitive landslide. Northern Ireland has changed.

"Not only do a huge majority of people in Northern Ireland want to see abortion made available to women and girls in the tragic circumstances of rape, incest or fatal foetal diagnosis, but they also want to see abortion decriminalised for all women.

"It's time for these outdated laws to be brought into the 21st Century."

A Stormont-established working group set up to examine Northern Ireland's ban on abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities has reported to the justice and health ministers.

The findings are set to be passed to other Executive ministers for consideration.

Last year, a High Court judge in Belfast ruled that the ban on terminations in instances of sexual crime or fatal foetal abnormalities were incompatible with international human rights laws.

Attorney General John Larkin and Stormont's Department of Justice appealed against that ruling. Judges are considering arguments made during the appeal hearing.