Belfast Telegraph

Abortions can destroy young women, says DUP MP Shannon

By Jon Vale

Women can be "destroyed" by having an abortion, a DUP MP has said.

Jim Shannon said that often vulnerable young women "are themselves destroyed by the sorrow that can naturally engender".

He also said mistreatment by the industry could lead to a woman's destruction.

The DUP has fought to halt an extension of abortion rights to Northern Ireland.

Strangford MP Mr Shannon made the comments during an adjournment debate on abortion, led by Labour MP Diana Johnson.

Mr Shannon said: "She knows my opinion in relation to these matters as well, and I understand that she's going to bring some things forward which would be a help.

"But at the same time, we are meant to believe that abortion somehow is an expression of a woman's right.

"But on the contrary, some of us believe that it is so often the means by which vulnerable young women are themselves destroyed by the sorrow that can naturally engender.

"Even an abortion itself does not come, does not cause the destruction of women, their mistreatment by the industry and by the sector that provides abortion in this country quite clearly can."

Yesterday was the first day that women from Northern Ireland could access abortions free of charge through NHS Scotland.

Regulations laid in the Scottish Parliament last month to allow the provision of the service to women from Northern Ireland came into force yesterday.

Scotland's Public Health Minister Aileen Campbell said: "Abortion can be an emotive subject however I am proud this government is working hard to ensure women are always able to access clinically safe services."

The Scottish Government's offer of free abortions to women from here means the province will be the only part of the UK not to do so, after moves by the parliaments in London and Cardiff.

Abortion is illegal in Northern Ireland except where the physical or mental wellbeing of the mother is at risk.

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