Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 September 2014

Abortion laws to go before Cabinet

Progress on new abortion laws will be reported to the Cabinet by James Reilly

Proposed new abortion laws will go before the Cabinet next week.

Health minister James Reilly reported to his ministerial colleagues on the progress of the legislation which is due to be enacted by July.

But no decision was taken despite an insistence by Taoiseach Enda Kenny that he still wants to see the law in place by the summer.

"I've said to the Dail that we would like to see the legislation enacted before the Dail rises for the summer, that's to give as much time as is practical and is needed," he said.

"I can't be obviously definite about that but I would like to think we could do that by the rising without having to pressurise people.

"Clearly there has been a lot of speculation over the weekend but obviously those are matters to be considered by Government."

The Taoiseach said that a great deal of work had to be done on the legislation but that he wanted Dr Reilly to give cabinet ministers an update on progress.

It is understood drafts on new legislation have not been examined as the coalition ministers in Fine Gael and Labour could not agree both parties were ready for discussions.

Elsewhere, Mr Kenny was forced to defend his stance on women's rights after being attacked by Clare Daly TD who questioned if their lives were less important than men.

Reports that the cabinet would be asked to sign off on a contentious six doctor assessment regime have also been left hanging in the air.

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