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Appeals panel could lift Arizona abortion-rules block

PHOENIX -- Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne has asked a federal court of appeals panel to remove a temporary block on new abortion medication regulations that foes said would force hundreds of women to have surgical abortions.

The panel could decide as soon as Monday whether to keep or lift the temporary stay requested by Planned Parenthood Arizona on the rules. A federal district court judge last week denied the request to block the rules, but the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals granted the injunction.

The rules ban women from taking the most common abortion-inducing drug -- RU-486 -- after the seventh week of pregnancy and require that the drug be administered only at the FDA-approved dosage.

Horne said Planned Parenthood has not shown the rules would cause irreparable harm.

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