Friday, 12 September 2014

Ian Paisley: SPUC mourns pro-life politician

SPUC has expressed its deep regret at the news of the death of Dr Ian Paisley and extended its condolences to Lady Paisley and their family.

Liam Gibson, SPUC's Northern Ireland development officer, told the media today:
"In his long political career as an MP, MEP, as First Minister of Northern Ireland and more recently as a member of the House of Lords, Dr Paisley remained a steadfast supporter of the right to life of unborn children.

His outspoken opposition to the extension of the Abortion Act to Northern Ireland meant that, even in the darkest days of the Troubles, there was some political common ground shared by Protestants and Catholics.

Although always remaining a controversial figure, many people within Catholic community greatly admired Dr Paisley for the firm line he took on moral issues, which was unambiguous and unapologetic.

During the debate in the House of Commons in 1990 on the introduction of the Abortion Act, Dr Paisley acknowledged the breadth of opposition to the Act, saying: 'The overwhelming opposition [to the extension of the Act] is amazing, because it stretches from the Unionist parties to the nationalist SDLP. It stretches from the churches to the students' union of Queen's University, which in no way could be called a conservative or right-wing body.'

When the Brook Advisory Centre opened in Belfast in 1992, Dr Paisley joined with people from  both sections of the community to oppose it.

In the very secular world of British politics Dr Paisley was never frightened to speak openly about his faith in God. He was always conscious that politicians would ultimately account to God for the policies they promote."
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