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Assisted suicide groups seek a home

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If Switzerland has been the place of choice for many foreigners seeking assisted suicide, it’s becoming more difficult for Swiss organisations providing these services to find suitable locations for them to come and die. (SRF/ swissinfo.ch)

In Switzerland, it’s illegal to perform active assisted suicide by administering a lethal dose of a drug to alleviate the suffering of a terminally ill patient. On the other hand Swiss law tolerates assisted suicide when a person administers the lethal dose themselves and the people assisting have no vested interest in the person’s death.

This has allowed the creation of organisations such as Dignitas and Exit who provide all services related to assisted suicide for a fee.

In November last year, Germany passed a bill that would allow assisted suicide only if conducted with “altruistic motives”, but prohibits the practice if carried on for a fee. This bill in effect bans all associations in Germany providing assisted suicide.

This has led to more Germans coming to Switzerland to end their lives with the aid of assisted suicide organisations.