- 12 Feb 18
In the latest issue of Hot Press, editor Niall Stokes asks Simon Coveney to reconsider his position on abortion.
Writing an open letter to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the editor states: "You have said that - while you support repealing the 8th - the provision to allow abortion without restriction up to 12 weeks goes too far. I am not sure how deeply you have thought about this. When you were interviewed on Today with Sean O'Rourke, you seemed hesitant and unconvinced - and there was a serious lack of clarity about you are proposing instead, to deal with the issue of rape. The bottom line is that what you offered was a recipe for more hypocrisy."
Exploring the history of the 8th Amendment, and how it came to be, Mr. Stokes reasons that that the 1983 Amendment was put into the constitution largely because of religious dogma and political expediency, and asks whether Simon Coveney wishes to find himself on the wrong side of history by playing the same types of games.
The letter also addresses the shocking 'X Case', where a 14 year old was prevented from travelling abroad for an abortion despite the fact that she was raped by a neighbour and was suicidal. This led to the almost bizarre situation where new amendments where put to voters, on of which - the 13th Amendment - effectively approved the idea of exporting abortions to the UK and elsewhere.
Further, it highlights the horrendous breach of human rights which occurred in the circumstances surrounding Savita Halappanavar, and the 'Y Case'.
"I am asking you to reconsider the position you have taken. Because ultimately, I believe it is wrong to put ideology before the good of Irish women. And I suspect that you may know this in your heart too."