1 Jun 2009

Abortion doctor killed in US church

8:10 pm on 1 June 2009

A prominent abortion doctor in the United States has been shot dead at his church in Kansas.

President Barack Obama has expressed outrage at the fatal shooting of 67-year-old George Tiller at the Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita on Sunday.

Dr Tiller's killing comes two weeks after Mr Obama sought what he called "common ground" over the divisive abortion debate in a speech at a Catholic university.

A 51-year-old man has been arrested over Dr Tiller's shooting.

Dr Tiller was one of a few doctors to perform late-term abortions in the country and had been demonised by abortion opponents.

He was acquitted in March on charges that he performed 19 illegal abortions in 2003.

The BBC reports his clinic has often been the site of demonstrations and he was shot and wounded by an assailant 16 years ago.

Police and city officials are quoted as saying Dr Tiller was shot in the lobby of the church.