The Irish Times Tuesday May 20th 2008
· Kenny calls for clarification by Catholic Church
STEPHEN ERRITY in Athlone
ABORTION: FINE GAEL leader Enda Kenny has called on the Catholic Church to clarify claims from some Catholic groups that implementation of the Lisbon Treaty would pave the way for the legalisation of abortion in Ireland.
Mr Kenny was speaking in Athlone yesterday at the launching of his party's Ireland West campaign for a Yes vote in the referendum on the treaty.
Referring to material appearing in the Catholic newspaper Alive, he said: "As a Catholic and a father of three young children, I have been offended by these articles, and many elderly people have communicated their concern and confusion about this matter to me.
"Our Constitution is quite explicit in its protection of the unborn. I do think clarification is necessary from the Catholic hierarchy that these articles do not represent the official church position."
Mr Kenny told reporters that he had been "heartened" by recent opinion poll findings which showed an increase in support for the treaty and he welcomed the launching of the Governments own campaign.
He said "complacency and confusion" were the main challenges facing the Yes campaign.
The case for the treaty came down to two fundamental issues: firstly, the series of challenges facing Europe in the coming years in the areas of climate change, poverty, terrorism and the economy; and secondly the opportunities available to Ireland in the future.