Midwife apologises for 'Catholic country' comment over Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar's abortion

London, Apr 11 (ANI): A midwife has apologised for telling the Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar, who suffered a miscarriage and died, that she could not have an abortion in Ireland because it was a "Catholic thing".

Ann Maria Burke admitted she made the remark to Halappanavar in University Hospital Galway just days before she died after giving birth, Sky News reported.

The senior midwife said that she had been trying to explain the law of the land after the 31-year-old, who was originally from India, said she was a Hindu and she would have ended her pregnancy in her home country.

"I did mention it's a Catholic country. I didn't mention it in a hurtful context. It was in a conversation we had. I'm sorry that I said it," Burke told Galway coroner Dr Ciaran MacLoughlin.

Halappanavar, who had been practising as a dentist in the Republic of Ireland for some time, was 17 weeks pregnant when she was admitted to the hospital in pain on October 21 last year.

She delivered a dead baby daughter three days later and was rushed to intensive care within hours of the delivery, where she remained in a critical condition.

On October 28 she died of a heart attack caused by septicaemia - an infection in the blood - due to E.coli bacteria.

The case reignited debates on abortion in Ireland, with her death sparking rallies and protests calling for a change in the law. (ANI)

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