If Westminster extended British abortion legislation to Northern Ireland it would be a "disgrace to democracy", a DUP MLA has claimed.
South Down Assemblyman Jim Wells, an outspoken opponent of abortion, was speaking at the official opening of a new headquarters for anti-abortion organisation the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC).
SPUC is the world's oldest pro-life organisation and sees its decision to establish a base in Belfast's Castle Lane as an important step in resisting proposed legislation to widen access to terminations here.
A former Health Minister at Stormont, Mr Wells said: "It's a great honour to be asked to this event and I am delighted that SPUC is increasing its presence here at such a crucial time, as the fundamental principles of the pro-life movement come under increasing pressure both in Northern Ireland and in London where there is growing support for Westminster to impose abortion legislation on the people of Northern Ireland.
"That would be a disgrace to democracy."
Mr Wells said he had received messages of support from right across the community.
"Many people are horrified about what is happening in the Irish Republic and are urging me to stand firm in the defence of our most defenceless citizens, the unborn," he said.
"Many of these people are from the nationalist community who are frustrated by the policy changes within the SDLP and Sinn Fein.
"They feel their sincerely-held views on this crucial issue are no longer being represented."