Abortions on grounds of gender are legal in Britain, the country’s top prosecutor clarified in a letter to the government.

He explained the reasons why the Crown Prosecution Service had declined to lay charges against two doctors who had agreed to arrange abortions of female fetuses because of their gender.

He said the The 1967 Abortion Act “does not ... expressly prohibit gender-specific abortions.”

The decision not to prosecute the doctors caused an outcry from politicians and church leaders who were concerned that the law had been broken.