Australia's Dr Death is coming to UK
Jeremy Laurance is a writer on health issues. He is former health editor of The Independent and the i and has covered the specialism for more than 20 years. He thinks the harm medicine does is under-appreciated, the harm it prevents over-rated, and that cycling works better than most drugs. He was named Specialist Journalist of the Year in the 2011 British Press Awards.
Thursday 27 October 2011
Dr Death is back. After an abortive attempt three years ago to instruct elderly and terminally ill Britons in how to end their lives, Dr Philip Nitschke is returning to the UK to host a series of seminars on DIY suicide methods.
The Australian pro-euthanasia campaigner plans to hold workshops in London, Edinburgh, York and the seaside town of Eastbourne, East Sussex, which boasts one of the highest populations of the elderly in the UK.
He is unlikely to be welcomed. On the last occasion he planned a similar series of seminars in Britain in 2008, local authorities refused permission for the meetings to go ahead.
Dr Nitschke, founder of the right-to-die organisation Exit International, campaigned succesfully to have an euthanasia law passed in Australia's Northern territory in 1996 and helped four patients end their lives before the law was overturned.
Sussex Police said someone who "aids, abets, counsels or procures the suicide of another, or an attempt by another" to commit suicide, could face prosecution.
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