The organisations are convinced that the research project is a sham, to bring the subject back on the political agenda. They have cancelled their cooperation for the time being.
“We really made an honest effort, but at some point you just give up,” said Bernhard Sutter, vice-president of Exit Deutsche Schweiz, at a press conference in Zurich.
Sutter said already the starting point of the program was teeming with moral and theological views. “This is not open and unbiased research,“ Sutter said. He claims the scientists are instead looking for ways to ban assisted suicide.
"Those two people are unsuitable for this task,” said Ludwig Minelli, the head of Dignitas. He said that the research he had inspected looked as if it was “controlled by [controversial Catholic institution] Opus Dei”.
The science foundation firmly rejects the charges. The scientific quality of the project is sound, according to spokesman Ori Schipper. The foundation had been aware of the charges since December 2012 and had offered to discuss the issue with the organisations but they had declined, he added.
According to the science foundation’s website, End of Life NRP 67 aims to make the last phase of life more humane. It encompasses 30 individual projects, including research on assisted suicide and euthanasia.
Considering the many claims of abuse concerning the operation of the Dignitas assisted suicide clinic, it does not surprise me that the Swiss assisted suicide groups are not open to government sponsored research to identify the assisted suicide practice in Switzerland.
Links to previous articles concerning the Dignitas assisted suicide clinic in Switzerland.
* Indepth article concerning the Dignitas clinic.
* British assisted suicide deaths in Switzerland remain low.
* Ludwig Minelli is making millions.