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Last Updated: Friday, 19 January 2007, 14:16 GMT
Mother wins dead son sperm case
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The lawyer of an Israeli couple who won the right to use their dead son's sperm to inseminate a woman he never met says the case is a boost for family rights.

Irit Rosenblum told the BBC the landmark ruling meant family lines could continue even without the written consent of the male prior to death.

The dead man, soldier Keivin Cohen, was killed in the Gaza Strip in 2002.

A court ruled in favour of his parents who had the sperm extracted after his death, although he had not left a will.

"The drama is international, that mankind is able to continue after [a man's] death and his family can raise a new generation while he is no longer here," Ms Rosenblum said.

Volunteers

The Cohen family took legal action after the hospital where their son's sperm was stored refused to release it, saying only a spouse could make such a request.

It's a dream come true
Irit Rosenblum
Lawyer

Although Mr Cohen, 20, was single and had left no written expression of his desire to become a father, his family claimed that had long been his wish.

The Cohens appealed for volunteers who were willing to be impregnated with the sperm and raise the child.

In an interview on Israel's Channel 10 news, Mr Cohen's mother, Rachel, said more than 200 women offered to help, AFP news agency reported.

During the four-year legal case, Ms Rosenblum presented testimony from Mr Cohen's family and friends that he had said he wanted children.

On Monday a court in Tel Aviv said the family could use the sperm to impregnate a 25-year-old woman who had agreed to be the mother.

"It's a great gain even though it took so long," Ms Rosenblum, a family rights advocate, told the BBC.

"It's a dream come true... On the one hand [the Cohens] lost a child, on the other hand they got some hope."


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Interview with Rachel Cohen, mother of the dead soldier



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