The Scottish Parliament will assume responsibility for abortion law north of the border, Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell has announced.
During a meeting with the parliamentary Scottish Affairs Committee, the Tory MP said he could see no reason why Holyrood could not take control of abortion law.
Mr Mundell said the sensitivity of the subject had been reflected in the fierce debates provoked during the passage of the original devolution bill and the subsequent Scotland Bill earlier this year. The latter will allocate further powers to the Scottish Parliament when it reaches the statute books.
The Secretary of State said:
“I understand that abortion law and whether it should be controlled by Holyrood are matters that many people feel very strongly about. I respect that….The Government has reflected very carefully on the points that have been made and I can today inform the Committee that we will bring forward an amendment to the Scotland Bill so that abortion law can be devolved to the Scottish Parliament.”
Mr Mundell represents the constituency of Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale and is currently the sole Scottish Conservative MP.