Health Minister 'confident' legislation to allow abortion up to 12 weeks will pass if repeal is successful

The Minister for Health Simon Harris says he is confident legislation to allow abortion up to 12 weeks will pass.

However, he says a yes vote on repealing the Eighth Amendment cannot be taken for granted.

A number of Senior Government Ministers have yet to say how they would vote on the 12-week proposal, prompting concerns that it may not pass the Dáil.

Speaking in Wicklow this morning, Mr Harris says that kind of discussion at this stage is dangerous.

He said: "I want to see the focus in the next couple of weeks on why we need to repeal the Eighth Amendment, an amendment that has been inserted in our Constitution that has been bad for women, which has meant we have exported crisis pregnancies to Britain and further afield and which has meant today women will be leaving our counties to go abroad for abortion and women will be taking the dangerous abortion pill without any medical supervision.

"That's what the focus needs to be on.

"If the people of Ireland vote yes, obviously legislation will follow, and I'd be confident that if the people vote yes, that that legislation would pass."


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