German justice authorizes assisted suicide
The question of euthanasia is sensitive in Germany, a country where the elderly are more and more numerous. Creative Commons
Text by: Pascal Thibaut Follow
In Germany, the Constitutional Court has ruled on assisted suicide. She censored on Wednesday a law which prohibited this assistance by doctors or associations. The court was seized by German and Swiss associations for assisted suicide.
From our correspondent in Berlin,
The German Constitution provides for a right to choose one's death. This means that every citizen must have the freedom to commit suicide or to seek the assistance of a third party to do so.
The law adopted by the Bundestag five years ago prohibiting assisted suicide is therefore unconstitutional. The Karlsruhe court decision forced the legislator to modify the previous text.
This judgment provides legal clarification to a complex situation. Because if the 2015 law prohibited assisted suicide, in particular that proposed by associations, the highest German administrative court had authorized it in exceptional cases.
The clear constitutional court ruling on Wednesday has the support of eight out of ten Germans, according to a recent poll. But the judgment was condemned by patient advocacy associations and by the Catholic and Protestant churches. Doctors potentially threatened by the 2015 law, however, expressed their satisfaction.
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- Health and Medicine
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