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Agreement to regulate assisted suicide

The Zurich chief prosecutor has reached an agreement with the Exit association over rules governing organised assisted suicide.

This content was published on July 10, 2009 - 11:45

This is the first time an assisted suicide group has signed such an agreement with government authorities.

The text, which was announced on Friday but reached last week, will regulate the particulars of assisted suicide, including the use of deadly sodium pentobarbital and compensation for those who help others kill themselves.

The basis comes from legislation regulating criminal sentencing and medicinal substances as well as guidelines from the National Ethics Commission and the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences.

The document will not change Exit's practices but will make them official. Exit signed the text voluntarily to make its activities more transparent.

Each year about 200 people seek help with suicide in canton Zurich, a third of them through Exit. Dignitas, another assisted-suicide group active in canton Zurich, has not signed the agreement.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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