Savita Halappanavar parents want abortion law in her name

Savita Halappanavar Savita Halappanavar's family said she asked several times for an abortion before she died.

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The parents of Savita Halappanavar, who died after being refused an abortion in Ireland, want the amended abortion law to be named after their daughter.

"I appeal to the government to name the legislation in her memory," said her father Andanappa Yalagi.

The Irish government has announced that it will legislate for abortion when the mother's life is at risk.

The move comes seven weeks after the death of Ms Halappanavar in a hospital in Galway in western Ireland.

Speaking at their home in Belgaum, in the southern Indian state of Karnataka, the parents welcomed the decision by Ireland to repeal legislation that makes abortion a criminal act and to introduce regulations allowing abortions when a woman's life is in danger.

Mr Yalagi said his daughter had repeatedly asked for a termination of the pregnancy and he blamed the doctors for her death: "They watched her die. They should be punished."

The high-profile case is now being investigated by health authorities.

The 31-year-old, who was 17 weeks pregnant, died at University Hospital Galway following a miscarriage.

'Socially divisive'

The four Catholic Archbishops of Ireland, including Cardinal Sean Brady, have criticised the decision by the government.

Abortion is currently illegal in the republic except where there is a real and substantial risk to a mother's life, as distinct from her health.

However, up until now the government has not enacted legislation to give certainty to doctors as to when terminations can be carried out and under what circumstances.

The move follows the report of an expert group set up to advise on how to bring legal clarity to the issue.

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