TRANSPORT Minister Leo Varadkar says he still has concerns about suicide being included as grounds for abortion and there will need to be a "wall of safeguards".

His comments come in the wake of a poll showing eight out of 10 people support legislation for the X-Case ruling on abortion.

Fine Gael has also suffered a dramatic dive in support on the back of the botched handling of the Savita Halappanavar tragedy.

Mr Varadkar also lashed out at pro-choice "extremists" as he said the majority of people do not want abortion on demand.

The minister repeated his call for the Government to consider holding a referendum on abortion, despite Taoiseach Enda Kenny ruling it out.

Full article by Fionnan Sheahan here

 
 
Taoiseach Enda Kenny has moved to defuse public controversy and tensions between the Coalition parties over abortion by promising swift action and calling for a “calm, rational and sensitive discussion”.

However, there was adverse reaction within his own party, with a number of Fine Gael backbenchers complaining that they were being “press-ganged” into moving too rapidly to deal with the matter.

Speaking this morning, Minister for Justice Alan Shatter said leaving suicide out the discussion surrounding abortion was not an option.  “The Supreme Court is absolutely clear upon this issue and the people have been absolutely clear. There were attempts made by previous Governments in 1992 and 2002 to remove suicide as an issue. The people on both occasions turned that down.”

During a private members’ time in the Dáil last night, Mr Shatter said that some citizens were more equal than others.

He moved to clarify his comments today. “When men in this country require medical treatment there are no barriers to their obtaining it," he said. "In these particular areas, for example, there are barrier to women obtaining treatment and in that sense they are less equal as citizens in one particular area of our life.”


Full article here

 
 
JUSTICE Minister Alan Shatter says it is "not an option" to leave out the threat of suicide as a grounds for abortion.

Fine Gael backbenchers are concerned about the inclusion of suicide in the forthcoming expected legislation on abortion in limited circumstances.

Mr Shatter says decision in the Supreme Court in the X case and subsequent court cases are clear on the question on suicide.

"It is not an option to leave it out," he said on RTE's Morning Ireland.

The minister said "the people have been absolutely clear" too in referenda in 1992 and 2002 on this question.

“The Supreme Court is absolutely clear about this issue and the people have been absolutely clear," he said.

Full article by Fionnan Sheahan here