A British woman with multiple sclerosis has lost her fight to get the law clarified on assisted suicide.
Debbie Purdy went to London’s High Court to make sure her husband would not be prosecuted, if at some point in the future, he travelled with her to end her life at a clinic in Switzerland.
“We still don’t know how we can make sure that we are staying within the law. Because I am not prepared for Omar to break the law, I am not prepared for him to risk jail,’‘ she said.
Assisted suicide in the UK carries a maximum 14 year prison sentence, but since 1992 nobody has been prosecuted, for helping around 100 people die.
Euthanasia also remains a hot issue in Italy. The family of Eluana Englaro, who has been in a vegetative state for 16 years, is still fighting to get her life support switched off. And in France, the death of Vincent Humbert caused a storm after his mother unsuccessfully tried to help him die, leaving him in a coma. The 22-year-old’s life support was later turned off.
Euthanasia is tolerated in Switzerland. Since 1998, the Dignitas clinic has helped hundreds of people end their lives.