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Fillon speaks out against euthanasia

Plans to legalise medical help for terminally-ill patients are “very dangerous” as they do not respect human life

PROPOSALS for a new law allowing euthanasia with medical help have been rejected by Prime Minister François Fillon, who said they do not fit in with his views on respect for human life.

Speaking on plans going through the Senate today, Mr Fillion said that, although he had never had to face the nightmare of living with someone as they died, he was still against a law allowing actively helping someone to die.

He thought such a law would not fit in with the “basic values of our society” and that to legislate giving the right to end someone’s life was a limit “we should not go beyond”. He said it was also “very dangerous” as it did not allow for any consultation with the family.

The law, proposed by Jean-Pierre Godefroy (Parti Socialiste), Alain Fouché (UMP) and François Autain and Guy Fischer (Parti communiste-Parti de gauche), is debated in the Senate this evening.

It proposes that “Each capable adult, in an advanced or terminal phase of a serious accidental or pathological terminal ailment, inflicting physical suffering and mental impairment that cannot be eased or that they can no longer bear, can ask for medical help that will allow, by deliberate act, a quick and pain-free death.”

Mr Fillon said the debate should also take account of the actions taken since 2008 by Nicolas Sarkozy who has made the care of terminally ill people “an absolute priority”.

That had led to the development of a palliative care programme that has seen the creation of 1,200 new beds and the start, last March, of specific financial aid to allow families to care for terminally ill loved ones.

Photo: David Mendiboure-Matignon

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