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On January 16th, the Cambridge University Union (founded in 1811, now the oldest continually operating debating society in the world), voted 207 to 67 (with 54 abstentions) to legalize Assisted Dying. Speaking in support of the motion were John Harris (Professor of Bioethics at Manchester University), Colin Brewer (retired psychiatrist, formerly on the Board of the Voluntary Euthanasia Society), and Michael Irwin
CBC Canada reported on January 18, 2014:
Francine Lalonde, the former Quebec MP who tried unsuccessfully to have a right-to-die bill passed by Parliament, has died of bone cancer, the Bloc Québécois announced today. The 73 year-old died shortly after the Supreme Court of Canada agreed to hear an appeal about whether the prohibition against assisted suicide is constitutional.
Lalonde, an 18-year veteran of the House of Commons,
The ISRAELHAYOM newsletter reports 24 January 2014:
A Ministerial Committee on Legislation plans to debate a new bill that seeks to legalize doctor-assisted suicide for terminally ill patients.
The proposal, dubbed the "death by prescription" bill, was drafted by MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid). It will be presented to the committee soon. Shelah aims to amend the existing Terminal Patient Law,
From Deutsche Welle: In Germany, euthanasia is illegal, but medically-assisted suicide is not forbidden. That means anyone who supplies a terminally-ill patient with poison isn't performing a criminal act. Peter Puppe is a retired teacher. Though he has no medical background, he helps terminally-ill patients who wish to end their lives. But many politicians in Germany want to ban any form of assisted suicide. See instructive video here.
Millions of viewers in the UK tuned in to watch the final scenes of one of its most popular characters Hayley Cropper in the long running soap Coronation Street. Viewers saw Hayley, played by actress Julie Hesmondhalgh, take an overdose after giving up her struggle with incurable cancer.The actress, who joined the soap in 1998 to play the Street's first transsexual and won the hearts of the nation with her on-screen romance with cafe owner Roy, played by David Neilson, has also spoken out in support of the storyline. She said it had been "a responsibility" and "a real privilege" and
The outcome was expected, but observers were astonished at the margin of victory. By a vote of 50 to 17, the Belgian Senate has approved euthanasia for children. When the bill finally passes – which now seems quite certain – there will be no age limit for choosing to die at the hands of Belgian doctor. The next step is a vote in the lower house, which will probably take place in May.
ChinaDaily (in an article by Wang Hongy from Shanghai) reported on a recent survey by Shanghai Jiao Tong University (December 2013) , which shows that about 70% of 3400 polled residents from 34 cities 'do not object to euthanasia or can accept the idea'. This would imply that two third of Chinese have an open mind towards euthanasia.
The topic of death has long been taboo in China. In Chinese tradition,
Waterford TD John Halligan, who has campaigned on Ms Fleming's behalf, said politicians will be forced to "look inside their souls" in relation to how the State deals with terminally ill patients. Mr Halligan insisted that he will propose assisted suicide legislation in a bid to address a "great injustice" faced by Ms Fleming. "Every TD in the Dail, including the Taoiseach, will have to look
In a debate on patient choice at the end of life on 12 December 2013, peers have disagreed over whether terminally ill patients should be given the right to assisted dying. Labour peer Lord Dubs said "people should have the right to choose to be free from intolerable pain and discomfort – providing it is their free choice. Assisted dying with safeguards is one of the many legitimate choices that dying patients should have," he asserted.
But Conservative peer Lord McColl of Dulwich
The Telegraph in London (John Bingham, Social Affairs Editor) reported on 8 December 2013, that a full panel of nine Supreme Court Justices, headed by Lord Neuberger, the court’s President, is to be convened next week to hear the culmination of three separate legal challenges to the current ban on assisted suicide. The three cases have been put into one ‘super-case’ to allow a sweeping judgment on the current state of the law in England and Wales.