Eluana Englaro, the woman at the center of the euthanasia debate in Italy, has died only a few days after having her fluids and food withheld from her care. It is very sad that society may find it acceptable to kill someone by intentional dehydration.
To intentionally dehydrate someone to death, who is not otherwise dying, is euthanasia. The intention of the omission is to cause death and the death results from dehydration.
It is interesting that she died of dehydration so quickly. Usually it takes 10 - 14 days to die from dehydration. The question is, what did she actually die from?
The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition urges the Italian Senate to continue drafting a bill to prevent further intentional deaths by dehydration.
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ROME: The woman at the heart of a bitter right-to-die debate died Monday, just as lawmakers began debating a bill designed to keep her alive, news reports said.
Eluana Englaro, 38, had been in a vegetative state since she was in a car accident 17 years ago.
"Yes, she has left us," the ANSA news agency quoted her father, Beppino Englaro, as saying. "But I don't want to say anything, I just want to be alone."
Her doctors said her condition was irreversible. Late last year, her father won a decade-long court battle to allow her feeding tubes to be removed, saying that was her wish.
But Italy's center-right government, backed by the Vatican, had pressed to keep her alive, racing against time to pass legislation prohibiting food and water from being suspended for patients who depend on them.
Senators who had been debating a bill designed to prevent her feeding tubes from being removed observed a minute of silence when the news was read out in the Senate chamber.
Government officials vowed late Monday to pass the legislation even though it was too late to save Englaro.