Northern Ireland’s leading pro-life organisation Precious Life say Sinn Fein’s amendment to the DUP’s motion on disability-selective abortion is ‘disingenuous’. The motion is due to be voted on by MLAs at Stormont today (Tuesday 2nd June).
The DUP motion is part of the party’s challenge to the law and “welcomes the important intervention of disability campaigner Heidi Crowter and rejects the imposition of abortion legislation which extends to all non-fatal disabilities, including Down syndrome”.
Precious Life criticised Sinn Fein for cynically trying to win back pro-life voters whilst still supporting abortion on-demand up to birth.
Director Bernadette Smyth said, “Sinn Fein’s amendment is nothing more than a cheap token which is being cynically employed to try and win back the votes of pro-life republicans. For a party so vociferously pro-abortion, any attempt to claim to care about unborn life must be discarded as wholly disingenuous.”
Precious Life urged pro-life people not to be fooled by the tactical move, which comes as Northern Ireland’s abortion law faces mounting criticism for allowing disability-selective abortion.
Ms Smyth continued, “Sinn Fein do not care about the treatment of unborn children. In December 2018, they rejected amendments in the Republic of Ireland on restricting abortion on the grounds of disability along with granting pain relief to babies in late term abortions. They have persistently advocated a cruel and extreme abortion agenda.”
“There is no excuse to be fooled – Sinn Fein single-handedly brought abortion into Northern Ireland in their disgraceful refusal to return to Stormont to reinstate the executive last October. There is no excuse for tolerating, or worse yet, applauding Sinn Fein. Their despicable actions – refusing to take British Parliament seats but delighted to see direct rule imposed when it suits them, in the case of abortion – must never be forgotten by the electorate. Sinn Fein are attempting to play both sides of the fence. However, if you are pro-life, you can neither vote for nor remain within its ranks.”
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Precious Life also said that the amendment was ‘discriminatory’ and noted that it only dealt specifically with ‘non-fatal abnormalities.’
“In effect, this means that the party are advocating abortion up to birth for babies who have ‘fatal’ disabilities, such as children diagnosed with anencephaly and other conditions with a short predicted lifespan. These children are just as precious, valuable, and worthy of life as a child with Down’s syndrome or cleft lip. The Sinn Fein amendment is ill-conceived, inconsistent and hugely discriminatory,” said Ms Smyth.
“The party must also be asked, what about the lives of those in the womb without ‘non-fatal’ disabilities? What about the 200,000 children aborted each year in Britain, many of whom did not specifically have a non-fatal disability? According to the UK Department of Health, approximately 98% of all abortions are performed on healthy babies,” she concluded.