First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has condemned the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the constitutional right to abortions almost 50 years after it was enshrined in American law.
Roe v. Wade was a landmark decision of the US Supreme Court in 1973 which legalised abortion in the United States.
The decision has been a major point of contention since a document leaked in May showed that the majority of the Supreme Court was in favour of overturning the decision.
Now overturned, it could restrict access to abortion and other reproductive healthcare for millions nationwide.
“Women will die.”Back Off Scotland
On Friday, Sturgeon tweeted her dismay over the US ruling, stating that it was “one of the darkest days for women’s rights” in her lifetime.
She said: “One of the darkest days for women’s rights in my lifetime. Obviously the immediate consequences will be suffered by women in the US – but this will embolden anti-abortion and anti-women forces in other countries too.
“Solidarity doesn’t feel enough right now – but it is necessary.”
Speaking at a press conference in Rwanda shortly after the ruling was announced, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that it would have “massive impacts on people’s thinking around the world”.
He added: “I’ve got to tell you, I think it’s a big step backwards. I’ve always believed in a woman’s right to choose and I stick to that view and that’s why the UK has the laws that it does.”
Tensions have been rising in Scotland in recent months as medical clinics which offer abortions have been targeted by controversial pro-life protesters and prompting the First Minister to offer to chair an emergency summit on reproductive rights.
Several Scottish women’s rights groups have criticised Friday’s decision, with Back Off Scotland saying it was “absolutely devastated”.
A statement from the organisation said: “Abortions will still happen. They’ll just happen in unsafe backstreet clinics.”
Pro-choice group Abortion Rights Edinburgh called for action, inviting supporters to join a rally outside the US consulate in the Scottish capital at 6pm on Friday, June 24.