Cabinet considers wording of referendum on 8th amendment

Officials say the Government is still on target to hold a referendum in late May

Cabinet considers wording of referendum on 8th amendment

Leo Varadkar and Simon Harris. Photograph: Eamonn Farrell / RollingNews.ie

Updated 10.40am

The Health Minister has described today's Cabinet meeting as 'another step on the road'.

Ministers are meeting to consider a draft referendum bill on the issue of the 8th amendment.

This draft bill sets out the question that may be asked to people in a referendum

It will likely ask if people wish to repeal the 8th amendment and allow the Oireachtas to provide for the termination of pregnancy in accordance with law.

Ministers are considering this first draft this morning, before making a final decision in two weeks time.

After the Cabinet meeting on March 6th we should know what the exact question will be, and have a clearer guide on what proposed new abortion legislation would be if the 8th amendment is repealed.

The Government plans to publish a policy paper outlining their intentions at the same time as the final referendum bill.

It will be in line with the Oireachtas committee recommendations of abortion without restriction for up to 12 weeks, and provisions for fatal foetal abnormality and risk to the mother's health.

A spokesperson for the Government says they are on still on target to hold a referendum in late May.