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Politicians, activists and researchers debate the issues facing the EU and a 'guest of the week' offers their insight in a long-format interview that gets to the heart of the matter. Saturday at 12.10 pm.

Latest update : 2018-05-14

Abortion laws: Time to liberalise? Irish referendum sparks debate around Europe

On May 25, Irish citizens will vote in a highly emotional referendum - one that could liberalise the right to abortion by repealing the Irish constitution's eighth amendment. When the amendment was introduced 35 years ago, abortion was already illegal in Ireland – but the amendment further restricted the circumstances under which a pregnancy could be terminated. Today, abortion is only constitutional in Ireland where the mother's life is deemed to be at risk.

The Irish government is backing the repeal. It’s signalled that it would introduce legislation to allow pregnancies to be terminated up to the 12th week. It’s a debate that’s pertinent in other parts of Europe too: Malta, Northern Ireland, Poland, as well as Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco and San Marino are all name-checked in a Council of Europe report as having highly restrictive laws.

On our programme we debate the key issues in the Irish referendum, and look at what role European institutions should be playing in the issues of family planning and maternal health.

A show produced by Isabelle Romero, Roxane Runel and Anaïs Guérard.

By Catherine NICHOLSON

Our guests

Deirdre CLUNE

Irish MEP, Fine Gael party, European People’s Party group

Branislav SKRIPEK

Slovak MEP, OľaNO party, European Conservatives and Reformists group

Caroline HICKSON

Regional Director, International Planned Parenthood Federation European network


2018-06-18 Catherine NICHOLSON

EU ombudsman: 'Just raising an issue can be sufficient to change things'

This week, we're talking about something we all like to indulge in sometimes: complaints. The European Union is the focus of literally thousands of official ones every year....

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2018-06-18 Armen GEORGIAN

Trouble in the eurozone: New Italian government puts pressure on establishment

Italy's new government has vowed to spend on the poor and also finance tax cuts. Those spending plans have the eurozone establishment worried. Will Rome blow up the budget...

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2018-06-11 Armen GEORGIAN

EU, UN team up to empower women

Talking Europe brings you a special edition from the European Development Days, featuring the head of UN Women and the EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and...

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2018-06-11 Armen GEORGIAN

Oxfam chief: 'Violence against women cuts across rich and poor countries'

Talking Europe brings you a special edition from the European Development Days, sometimes called "the Davos of Development." Since its launch in 2006, the event has established...

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2018-06-04 Catherine NICHOLSON

Macedonia's defence minister on EU and NATO membership hopes

It's not a question many of us have ever had to ask ourselves: does my country have the right name? And how would I feel if someone changed it? But it's a question that's being...

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