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Irish Health Minister Simon Harris

DUBLIN, Ireland, January 3, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Simon Harris, Ireland’s health minister, has promised to create “exclusion zones” banning pro-life witness around abortion facilities.

Harris said he is “committed” to restricting pro-life speech outside abortion centers after pro-abortion politicians condemned pro-lifers online.

A video of a pro-life witness outside the National Maternity Hospital in Dublin (where babies are aborted) was posted to Twitter by Dr. Mary Higgins, a consultant at the hospital.

“Right here (national maternity hospital), right now 1/1/20; wonder why we need exclusion zones @LeoVaradkar @SimonHarrisTD – beneath the windows of a postnatal ward, in front if people leaving after a miscarriage, with small coffins, crosses and unsavoury images,” she tweeted.

Harris replied to the tweet, saying, “Appalled to see. I don’t wonder why we need it at all. Have been engaging with Attorney General, Gardai & service providers about how best to bring it in in a manner that is constitutional etc. Can assure you I am committed to it and will be meeting cross party on it this month.”

In comments to the press, Harris blasted the peaceful pro-lifers, asking, “How dare you turn up at a National Maternity Hospital and try to intimidate women?” 

Harris also wrote a series of tweets on his own Twitter account on January 1 celebrating the introduction of abortion to the Republic of Ireland. 


Catherine Noone, the deputy leader of the Irish Senate, also took to Twitter to complain about the pro-life event, saying, “We can’t wait any longer for exclusion zone legislation, it should have been done before now. It needs to be a major priority for the start of the new term. The danger is that it might never happen if there’s a change of Government.”

Higgins has been criticized by a number of Twitter users for having supported a pro-abortion event outside the same hospital in 2018. One user responded to Higgins’ claim to be concerned about the impact of a pro-life witness on women leaving the hospital after a miscarriage, by asking, “Not worried about mothers to be that day, were you?”

The National Maternity Hospital was the focus of media attention last year when an expectant mother opted to have an abortion after a test taken at the hospital inidicated her that her child had Trisonomy 18. It was later confirmed that the baby had been perfectly healthy and the devastated mother called for a public enquiry. In September of last year, the first 40 Days for Life campaign of peaceful pro-life prayer was launched outside the hospital following the introduction of legislation allowing for abortion on demand in the Emerald Isle.