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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

Irish pro-lifers warn Sturgeon to stay out of abortion debate

Pro-life groups in Ireland have condemned Nicola Sturgeon’s plans to explore how Northern Irish women could obtain free access to abortions in Scotland’s NHS hospitals.

Scotland’s first minister confirmed that the Scottish Government would hold talks with the Scottish NHS in a bid to enable women from Northern Ireland to have free terminations on the health service, as she paid a visit to Dublin on Tuesday 29th November.

However, Bernadette Smyth, the director of Precious Life, the leading pro-life group in Northern Ireland, warned Ms Sturgeon: “Don’t spill Irish blood on Scottish soil”.

“How dare Ms Sturgeon target Northern Ireland’s unborn children,” she told The Universe. “Her comments reveal that Northern Ireland’s unborn children are in her cross hairs. This is greatly disturbing news to the pro-life majority in Northern Ireland who want mothers and their unborn children protected from abortion, no matter who commits the abominable act of exploiting a vulnerable woman and killing her unborn child, and no matter where that abominable act takes place.

“Sturgeon must take her aim off women and unborn children in Northern Ireland.”

Ms Smyth stressed that there is no health crisis in Northern Ireland and that women do not need abortion, pointing out that it is not a health issue but a criminal offence, which exists to protect both mothers and their unborn children.

“To make provisions for women to access free abortions in Scotland would be to run roughshod over the law and the democratic process in Northern Ireland,” she added. “This will not go unchallenged. There will be a public outcry.”

Meanwhile, Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute said that the abortion rates – and the rate of repeat abortions – in Scotland were shocking. “Ms Sturgeon would be better served examining why the Scottish NHS was failing mothers and babies, rather than seeking to interfere in the abortion debate in Ireland,” she told The Universe.

Picture: Nicola Sturgeon. (Jane Barlow/PA).