Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Belgium MPs adopt right-to-die for children  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 14/02/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN -Arab News) BRUSSELS: Twelve years after legalizing euthanasia for adults, Belgium’s parliament extended the right to die to terminally ill children of any age Thursday, despite opposition from the Church and some pediatricians


After months of heated debate, the lower House of Representatives adopted the legislation by a large majority, making the largely Catholic country the second after the Netherlands to allow mercy-killing for children, and the first to lift all age restrictions


The ground-breaking legislation was adopted by 86 votes in favor, 44 against and with 12 abstentions. Belgium is one of three countries in Europe to allow euthanasia for adults


“It is not a question of imposing euthanasia on anyone ... but of allowing a child not to agonize in pain,” said Socialist MP Karine Lalieux ahead of the vote


Unlike the Dutch across the border, where euthanasia is allowed for children over 12, the law states that any incurably sick child may request to end their suffering if “conscious” and equipped with “a capacity of discernment.&rdquo


“The right to life and death cannot be restricted to adults,” said liberal MP Daniel Bacquelaine


Addressing controversy over the decision not to set an age restriction for “discernment,” he said a child’s “legal age isn’t the same as mental age.&rdquo


Socialist senator Philippe Mahoux, author of Belgium’s historic 2002 “right to die” legislation and himself a doctor, had called for the law to be widened to minors so as to offer a legal framework for medics for helping children in pain die as a question of mercy, but outside the law


Euthanasia is “the ultimate gesture of humanity” and “not a scandal,” he said. “The scandal is illness and the death of children from disease.&rdquo


The law offers the possibility of euthanasia to children “in a hopeless medical situation of constant and unbearable suffering that cannot be eased and which will cause death in the short-term.&rdquo


Counselling by doctors and a psychiatrist or psychologist is required, as is parental approval


Before its adoption by a huge majority in the Senate in December, the upper house consulted dozens of medical specialists, lawyers and interest groups


But during public debate, religious leaders of all faiths argued that extending euthanasia to the young risked ldquo;trivialising” death




In recent days, the Catholic Church staged “a day of fasting and prayer” in protest and this week some 160 pediatricians petitioned lawmakers to postpone the vote on the grounds it was both ill-prepared and unnecessary


“Pain can be eased nowadays, there’s been huge progress in palliative care,” said cancer specialist and signatory Nadine Francotte


In a stormy exchange in parliament on the eve of the vote, Christian Democrat member Sonja Becq argued that modern palliative medication could relieve pain in very sick youngsters, therefore allowing illness to run a natural course to death


“Euthanasia is not the only way to die in dignity,” she said. “Euthanasia is not ‘a happy end’.&rdquo


But Brussels palliative specialist Dominique Lossignol said it was mistaken to believe palliative care could remedy suffering


“We do not have control over all types of pain, either physical or moral,” he told AFP. “We doctors have been asking for an extension of the law for years.&rdquo


Thursday’s vote saw Socialists, Liberals and Greens members largely line up in favor, with centrist Christian-leaning parties opposed


But party whips said it was up to individuals to decide how to vote on this life and death issue


Critics said the legislation failed to address problems and potential loopholes such as possible discord between the two parents over a child’s request to be euthanized


And they asked how could adults be sure that a child had the “discernment” necessary to decide to give up life or even really understands the notion


“Experience shows us that in cases of serious illness and imminent death, minors develop very quickly a great maturity, to the point where they are often better able to reflect and express themselves on life than healthy people,” a group of pediatricians in favor of the legislation said in December


Polls showed a majority of Belgians backing the proposal but there was a surge of concern last year when a 44-year-old in distress after a failed sex change was euthanized on psychological grounds in a highly publicized case


Belgium registered 1,432 cases of euthanasia in 2012, up 25 percent. They represented two percent of all deaths


Neighbouring Netherlands has seen only five euthanasia requests from youngsters in the last decade.

 


Arab News




  MENA News Headlines
 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- El Jaish aim to dethrone LekhwiyaThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Lekhwiya players lift the Qatar Cup trophy in this May 2 2015 file picture. Doha: El Jaish will be looking for a repeat of their 2014 Qatar Cup success when they ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar Cup Trophy Tour stops at OoredooThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Doha: The Qatar Cup tour made its final stop at Ooredoo the official telecom partner of the Qatar Cup 2016. Staff and management took an opportunity to take photos and ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Al Rayyan rally to win Qatar Cup titleThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Al Rayyan SC players and officials celebrate while receiving the Qatar Cup after they beat El Jaish SC 21-25 25-18 25-17 32-34 18-16 in the final played at Ali Bin Hamad Al ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- Emir Cup: Al Kharaitiyat Al Gharafa earn thrilling wins to advanceThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Al Sailiya’s Abdurahman Al Harazi (left) celebrates after scoring the first goal for his team during their Emir Cup third round match against Al Wakrah SC at Al Arabi ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Steinmeier doubts Trump's 'America first' planThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier gestures during a joint press conference with Portuguese Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva (not seen) after their meeting ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- Met predicts a hot day with some cloudsThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Doha: The weather forecast for Qatar valid until 6pm Thursday inshore will be hot during the day with some clouds offshore will be hazy to misty at places and partly ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar key to boosting Turkey-GCC tiesThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani met Turkey’s Prime Minister Dr Ahmet Davutoglu and his delegation at the Emiri Diwan yesterday. They discussed relations ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- Emir welcomes King Mohammed of MoroccoThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani welcomes King Mohammed VI of the Kingdom of Morocco and his delegation at Hamad International Airport. Doha: Emir H H Sheikh ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar eyes 'best of the best' turf for 2022The Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) A worker tends to grass being grown at a research and development centre in Murakh to find the best playing surface for FIFA 2022 yesterday. Doha: Watching grass grow ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar discusses WTD eventsThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Doha: Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) yesterday held a meeting with UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) to discuss Qatar’s preparations to host World Tourism Day 2017. ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- Premier meets EU Counterterrorism CoordinatorThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Doha: Prime Minister and Interior Minister H E Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani yesterday met European Union Counterterrorism Coordinator Gilles de Kerchove ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- QU University of Illinois sign dealThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) DOHA: An agreement signed between Qatar University College of Medicine (QU-CMED) and the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) has established ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- AZF Ramadan Sports Festival from June 10The Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) DOHA: Aspire Zone Foundation (AZF) has added cricket and rugby to its annual Ramadan Sports Festival which starts on June 10. The two-week event will end on June 24 (5-19 ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar- First phase of mapping genetic code of citizens in final stageThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) By Fazeena Saleem DOHA: The initial phase of an initiative to map the genetic code of citizens for better diagnoses and treatment of diseases in Qatar has reached the ...

 Apr 29 2016 - Qatar and Turkey sign security agreementThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Prime Minister and Interior Minister H E Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani and other officials listen to Turkish Prime Minister Dr Ahmet Davutoglu at a meeting ...

 Apr 28 2016 - Qatar- Benzema suffers hamstring strain doubt for City returnThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Real Madrid's Karim Benzema in action with Manchester City's Jesus Navas.Darren Staples Madrid:Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is a major doubt for the Spanish giants ...

 Apr 28 2016 - Qatar- Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli suspended for violent conductThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) London: Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli will miss the last three matches of the season after accepting Thursday an FA charge for violent conduct. The FA charged the ...

 Apr 28 2016 - Dubai's GEMS Education to raise 250 million for expansionThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) By Arif Sharif and Matthew Martin GEMS Education one of the world’s biggest operators of private schools raised a $250 million loan to build new schools in the ...

 Apr 28 2016 - Saudi Cabinet approves vast economic reform planThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Riyadh:The Saudi government on Monday approved a plan for vast economic reforms dubbed "Saudi Vision 2030" to substantially reduce the OPEC kingpin's reliance ...

 Apr 28 2016 - Saudi Arabia to sell less than 5 of Aramco create 2 trillion fundThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Al Arabiya interview. Riyadh:Saudi Arabia will sell shares in state oil giant Aramco and set up the world's largest wealth fund under a long-term economic reform plan the ...

more...


 






Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help