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Bishop criticises opening of Marie Stopes clinic offering abortion

Bishop of Down and Connor Noel Treanor said the clinic undermines the dignity of human life in society.

THE BISHOP OF Down and Connor has criticised the opening of a Marie Stopes clinic in Belfast which will offer abortion up to nine weeks’ gestation.

Bishop Noel Treanor said this evening that he had “great concern and dismay” about the clinic which will provide medical abortions within the current legal framework in Northern Ireland.

The bishop highlighted the ongoing ‘Choose Life’ campaign led by the Catholic Church which promotes an anti-abortion message through pastoral messages, homily notes and parish newsletter notices.

“It is with great concern and dismay that I, like many fellow citizens who value and seek to protect human life, received news of the decision to open a Marie Stopes Clinic in Belfast where medical abortion will be offered,” said Bishop Treanor.

“The opening of this facility further undermines the sanctity and dignity of human life in our society where the most vulnerable and defenseless human beings are already under threat”.

He called on the Christian community and citizens to show compassion for women facing an unwanted pregnancy by supporting them while respecting the life of their child in the womb.

“We should enable them to respond to such situations in a life-affirming and positive way,” he said.

Marie Stopes International has said abortion will be available within the current legal framework in Northern Ireland when the life of the pregnant woman is at immediate risk or if there is a long term or permanent risk to her physical or mental health.

Read: First private abortion clinic to open in Northern Ireland >

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