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Strengthening the Union

Part of Northern Ireland – in the House of Commons on 18th March 2020.

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Photo of Robin Walker Robin Walker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, The Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office

The Government understand the strength of feeling about this issue. We have always been clear that the best way to bring forward reform in this area would have been for the Executive and Assembly to take that forward in the best interests of Northern Ireland. However, the Government are under a clear legal duty, which this House put on it, to make regulations that provide lawful access to abortion services in Northern Ireland by 31 March 2020. To comply with the legal requirement, we will shortly lay regulations in Parliament. It will be a matter for the Department of Health in Northern Ireland to commission the new services.