Tony Nicklinson’s right-to-die case to be heard in court: judge

A UK judge today ruled that Tony Nicklinson, a paralysis victim whose mind is intact but can only blink his eyes, will hear his right-to-die case heard at the High Court, reported BBC

A victim of "locked-in syndrome" that makes him incapable of committing suicide, Nicklinson had requested a legal action that would allow doctor to help him end his life. The Ministry of Justice rejected the request, countering that such a move would permit the deliberate taking of one's life and change murder laws, said BBC

The judge at the High Court today, Mr. Justice Charles, defended the ruling by saying issues tied to Nicklinson's case "raise questions that have great social, ethical and religious significance and they are questions on which widely differing beliefs and views are held, often strongly," according to BBC

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He allowed the case to move forward based on two possible grounds, according to Sky News, one argument being a doctor could ending his life on the basis of necessity, the other that Mr Nicklinson's right to a private life may not be limited by current murder laws and criminalized voluntary active euthanasia.

The case, which is expected to be heard at the High Court in coming weeks, is unusual in that it may call for the defense of a mercy killing, said Sky News

Nicklinson, who is married with two adult daughters, has called his condition "intolerable" and says wants his "suffering to end," reported the Guardian

His wife Jane read a statement from her husband on BBC today that praised the courts for "providing the forum for debate if the politicians continue to ignore one of the most important topics facing our society today," saying it is "no longer acceptable for 21st Century medicine to be governed by 20th Century attitudes to death."

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