Talks are continuing between Fine Gael and the Independent Alliance on how the IA will vote on the Anti-Austerity Alliance-People Before Profitbill to repeal the Eight Amendment on abortion.

The Independent Alliance previously secured a free vote on a bill on Fatal Foetal abnormalities.

It is understand the Independent Alliance wants a counter motion put down which would provide for the Citizens' Assembly to report back on the Eight Amendment sooner than planned.

The Assembly is due to issue its report in June next year.

Some sources within the Alliance say if this cannot be achieved,  it will seek that the Assembly to publish an interim report before then.

Earlier, Minister for Health Simon Harris said the establishment of the Citizens' Assembly was in the Programme for Government and had been agreed by the Cabinet and the Oireachtas.

He said it should be allowed to continue its work and emphasised its June deadline on the Eight Amendment.

Speaking in Limerick earlier today, Mr Harris has said his expectation is that the Government will agree a unified position on the Independents' abortion bill, when it meets in Cabinet tomorrow.

He said that a lot has happened since the last abortion bill came before the Dáil in July. Three members of the Independent Alliance supported that bill.

Ms Justice Mary Laffoy has indicated the assembly will begin considering the issue at its meeting next week, and that it will report back to the Oireachtas by next summer.

The minister also expects the Government will put forward a reasonable amendment to the bill in the Dáil tomorrow, outlining why it is not in a position to accept the bill at this time.

Minister for Communications Independent Denis Naughten said the Independent Alliance would have to take its own approach to tomorrow's debate on the abortion bill, but as far as he is concerned there is unanimity at Cabinet level.

He urged politicians in both houses to allow the Citizens' Assembly to take place and not to pre-determining the outcome.

Mr Naughten he said he believed this is the correct approach where issues could be debated in a calm and measured manner.

The AAA-PBP launched its bill with campaigners from a number of groups including the Abortion Rights Campaign Ireland, National Women's Council of Ireland, Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment, the USI, Doctors for Choice and ROSA.

TD Ruth Coppinger said it was not unprecedented for members of the Government to take different positions. She pointed to the referendum on the Eighth Amendment in 1983, which Labour had opposed in Government.

She appealed to members of the Independent Alliance to maintain a principled position on the issue.

Ms Coppinger also said any attempt to delay the bill would be wrong and indicated there could be a vote on the matter and the Citizens' Assembly.

AAA-PBP today stated that since the Government came to power 2,159 women have travelled abroad to access abortion services or have ordered abortion pills online.

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