Abortion in Northern Ireland

Abortion remains a highly sensitive issue, regardless of where your view lies and one where it is important that the matter is considered with due care and sensitivity. 
Whilst I understand that the Irish referendum has undoubtedly reinvigorated debate within Northern Ireland, it is important to be clear that the referendum was specific to the Republic of Ireland, where a change to their written constitution requires a referendum.  The referendum now allows for legislation amending the Republic's abortion law to be debated and passed through both Houses of the Oireachtas.
In my view, any future reform in Northern Ireland must be debated and decided by the people of Northern Ireland and their locally-elected politicians. Indeed, this has been the position of successive Governments, both Conservative and Labour. I am conscious of the fact that the Northern Ireland Assembly voted against any changes to Northern Ireland's abortion laws in February 2016 and as such, I do not believe we as MPs should seek to overrule that decision just two years later.

Therefore, I welcome the Secretary of State's recent commitment to work closely with Northern Ireland's political parties to restore strong, inclusive devolved government at the earliest opportunity.