Husband of Woman Denied Abortion Suing Ireland

Savita Halappanavar died Oct. 28

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Nov 29, 2012 2:27 PM CST

(Newser) – The widower of an Indian woman who died in an Irish hospital after being refused an abortion plans to sue Ireland's government in the European Court of Human Rights. Praveen Halappanavar confirmed his decision today through his lawyer. His wife, Savita, died Oct. 28 in a Galway hospital one week after being admitted for severe pain amid a miscarriage. Doctors refused to perform an abortion for three days while the 17-week-old fetus still had a heartbeat.

Savita fell gravely ill after the dead fetus was removed and then suffered gradual organ failure. A coroner ruled she died from blood poisoning. The case has forced Ireland to re-examine its refusal to pass any laws governing when women can receive abortions to save their own lives.

Women hold pictures of Savita during a candlelit vigil outside Belfast City Hall, Northern Ireland, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012.
Women hold pictures of Savita during a candlelit vigil outside Belfast City Hall, Northern Ireland, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012.   (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)
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