Committee on the Eighth Amendment resumes

The Committee on the Eighth Amendment will resume hearings this morning.

Discussions will focus on risks to mental health, terminations arising from rape and cases of foetal abnormality.

"We had a vote last week and the committee decided that article 40.3.3 would not be retained in full. This is an acknowledgement by the committee that the status quo is something we need to look at.

"It will ultimately be up to the people in a referendum likely to happen next year," said Senator Catherine Noone.

The Committee has come in for tough scrutiny after two members - TD Mattie McGrath and Senator Rónán Mullen – alleged its work has been fixed to deliver a particular outcome.

Chair of the Committee, Senator Noone, refutes claims that the committee is biased.

"Allegations of bias are unfounded. As far as I'm concerned, as Chair, there was a clear methodology that we would look to the Citizens' Assembly for some witnesses - and many of those appear in the work programme - and the other witnesses were suggested by members of the committee," she said.

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