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Belgium hits the euthanasia headlines again

Belgium is set to debate and vote upon the extension of its euthanasia laws to under-18s this week.  As reported in the July edition of image news, where it was reported the bill was being drawn up, there has been a 25% increase in Belgian euthanasia cases in 2012, compared to 2011. The proposals should not come as a surprise, given the obvious relaxation in these laws which have been reported in the news over the last couple of months.  A transsexual man requested a lethal injection from cancer specialist Dr Wim Distelmans on the grounds of “intolerable psychological suffering”.  Nathan Verhelst (44), who was born a woman called Nancy had undergone a sex change operation but found that her transformed body repulsed her and she could cope no longer.  As reported in The Telegraph, the doctor who euthanised Nathan was the same doctor who euthanised deaf twin brothers Marc and Eddy Verbessem in December 2012.  Both cases are linked by the alarming fact that in neither case were the patients involved suffering from terminal illness or unbearable physical pain, the grounds for euthanasia in Belgium.    

Euthanasia rates for Holland have also come under scrutiny

In a similar vein, the euthanasia or assisted suicide rates for Holland have come under the spotlight after it emerged an elderly lady was euthanised purely because she had bad eyesight. The lady concerned had been born with bad eyesight which had gradually deteriorated and her death is the first of its kind which cites blindness as the sole reason for euthanasia.  Concerns are now growing over the relaxation of such laws, which would see euthanasia being a viable option for relatively trivial reasons.  Some pro-life campaigners have also pointed out that she should have been given more psychological help when reaching her decision.  Christian Concern quotes Anthony Ozimic of pro-life group the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child in its coverage of the news:

“Wherever euthanasia or assisted suicide has been allowed, so-called ‘exceptional circumstances’ are quickly becoming the norm, and the criteria for death are expanding…millions of people around the world are blind, yet these doctors in their callous arrogance have deemed that at least some blind people should be killed rather than treated.”





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