Friday, July 4, 2008

German Chancellor Merkel Remains Strongly Opposed to Assisted Suicide

Comments from,2144,3456813,00.html states:
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has spoken out in the strongest terms against euthanasia as the heated debate over a former Hamburg government official's involvement in the assisted suicide of a pensioner gathers pace.

Merkel, said that she was against "every form of assisted suicide" regardless of the circumstances.

Merkel’s stance was echoed by Germany's Health Minister Ulla Schmidt. "I reject this path categorically," she said. "The correct path is to offer assistance to those who are dying instead of helping those free from terminal illness to commit suicide.”

The debate was prompted by the revelation this week that a 79-year-old Wurzburg woman chose to end her own life on Saturday despite not having any life-threatening diseases or suffering great physical pain. What added an extra angle to the story was that former Hamburg justice senator Roger Kusch, a proponent for the right to die, advised her of the best way to do it.

Merkel’s (CDU) party wants to introduce a bill in CDU controlled states that would make the involvement in an assisted suicide a new criminal offense which carries a prison term of up to three years for the commercial or otherwise organized offering of suicide assistance. The CDU is expected to put the bill to the Bundestag, the lower house of parliament, on Friday.

It is likely that the German government understands the threat euthanasia is for people with disabilities, better than other European nations, due to their past which included the Euthanasia deaths of at least 70,000 people with disabilities or mental conditions.

No comments: