A judge has blocked a pro-life Bill in the US from coming into effect, less than 24 hours after it was signed into law.
On Monday, abortion was effectively banned from taking place after 15 weeks of pregnancy in the US state of Mississippi but this was blocked the next day.
The legislation had been described by some in the media as the strongest pro-life law in the US.
Governor Phil Bryant had said he was “proud” to sign the Bill after it had been approved in the State House of Representatives and Senate.
Mississippi Center for Public Policy’s acting president Jameson Taylor said: “We’re thrilled that Mississippi lawmakers are taking a step to protect the basic right to life, as well as protecting maternal health.”
After signing the Bill, Governor Bryant said: “I am committed to making Mississippi the safest place in America for an unborn child, and this bill will help us achieve that goal.”
Abortionists who violated the law would have had their medical licences suspended or revoked.
The Bill fell short of a complete ban after 15 weeks. It contained exceptions for medical emergencies and cases of “severe foetal abnormality”.
Pro-abortion group the Center for Reproductive Rights filed a lawsuit to challenge the pro-life measure, and US district judge Carlton Reeves upheld their complaint, placing a temporary restraining order upon the Bill.
Last year, a pro-life Bill to ban abortions from taking place after 20 weeks of pregnancy was passed in Kentucky.
Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin signed the Bill, along with a separate measure that requires pregnant women to be given an ultrasound and receive a description of their unborn baby before going through with an abortion.
Governor Bevin, an evangelical Christian, said afterwards: “I personally believe that it’s inappropriate to kill human beings that are innocent.
“And it’s hard for me to imagine a scenario when someone could tell me that killing innocent human beings is a good thing.”