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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


2018-10-15 Talking Europe

Spain's Europe minister rules out new Catalan independence referendum

Spain's European Affairs Minister, Luis Marco Aguiriano, says there will be no new regional referendum on independence for Catalonia. "If there is a referendum aimed at changing...

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2018-10-15 Talking Europe

Hungary's Orban: What consequences of symbolic EU vote?

In an unprecedented step, EU lawmakers recently voted to take action against Hungary's government for undermining fundamental EU values. Brussels accuses Budapest of breaking the...

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2018-10-08 Talking Europe

France's Europe minister: 'Chequers plan would threaten functioning of EU'

France's European Affairs Minister Nathalie Loiseau says British Prime Minister Theresa May must change the UK's draft Withdrawal Agreement, as "the Chequers proposal would...

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2018-10-08 Talking Europe

Norwegian FM on Brexit: 'Our aim is to keep the Single Market intact'

Norway wants to keep a good relationship with the UK after Brexit – but without compromising the Single Market. So says Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide in an...

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2018-10-01 Talking Europe

Georgia: From Silk Road crossroads to EU connections (part 2)

Georgia is a place where East and West collide: a major crossing point on the ancient Silk Road, a former Soviet Republic and now one of the EU’s "neighbourhood" partners. Nearly...

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