5 March, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 04/18/2007
RUSSIA
Orthodox Church and scientists against euthanasia
Russia’s Federation Council is to vet a draft bill legalising euthanasia in ‘exceptional cases.’ “Doctors, lawyers and representatives of public organisations” will decide requests by terminal patients. “Absolutely amoral from the Christian viewpoint to help one commit a suicide,” says Moscow Patriarchate representative. Religious groups should be involved in the debate.

Moscow (AsiaNews) – Russia’s Federation Council (upper house) is debating whether to allow euthanasia in some cases, the Kommersant daily reported on Tuesday. The Russian Orthodox Church, Duma members and scholars immediately voiced their strong opposition.

The initiative comes from Valentina Petrenko, chairwoman of the Federation Council Social Policy Committee, who favours euthanasia “in the most exceptional cases.”

Should euthanasia become legal, terminal patients would be required to inform their physician in writing who in turn would have the request notarised. A panel of doctors would then have two months to examine it and determine whether improvement or treatment is possible before accepting it. Finally, if “the medical certificate is approved, the patient's request will be considered by a council to be set up under an executive body, such as a regional administration. It shall be made up of medics, Prosecutor's Office officials, lawyers, and representatives of public organisations', Ms Petrenko said.

The proposal does not however specify under what conditions a patient can exercise the right to euthanasia. All Chairwoman Petrenko had to say was that euthanasia “should be a way out for special patients who have no chance to recover, who are tormented by a disease or suffer from a very severe injury and who themselves ask to be relieved  of their agony.”

It “is absolutely amoral from the Christian viewpoint to help one commit a suicide,” said Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, vice-chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s External Church Relations Department.

He said he hoped that the debate over ‘voluntary death’ continues, involving as much as possible religious and civil society groups. “Doctors, lawyers and generally professional communities alone cannot decide the fate of this law,” he said.

He is not alone. Mikhail Davydov, president of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, agrees. The Russian Health and Social Policy Ministry is critical of the proposal. Human rights groups have voiced doubts about the draft citing the country’s rampant corruption which might distort the process. Instead of reflecting a patient’s final wish euthanasia might be a choice imposed by a self-serving relative.

Pavel Krasheninnikov, chairman of the Duma Legislation Committee, also slammed the idea of legalising euthanasia in Russia.

“Just as in case of mistakes made in [. . .] death sentences, [. . .] we should consider that mistakes and abuses [are] theoretically possible in the case of the so-call voluntary death [and] cannot be rectified later,” he said.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
06/07/2012 RUSSIA
Crackdown on demonstrations on the eve of the new anti-Putin march
by Nina Achmatova
07/12/2010 RUSSIA
Right to demonstrate at risk in Duma bill
by Nina Achmatova
03/05/2008 RUSSIA
Moscow Patriarchate says no to ecumenical prayers
by A. Pirogov
06/24/2009 AZERBAIJAN
Parliament debating law to stop NGOs
03/28/2008 RUSSIA
Moscow Patriarchate to “monitor” Catholic orphanages
by D. Dudochkin, A. Pirogov

Editor's choices
EGYPT - ISLAM
What Tayeb and Sisi said is big step towards a revolution in Islam
by Samir Khalil SamirThe grand imam of Al-Azhar slammed literalist interpretations of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, as fundamentalists and Islamic terrorists do. He supports the urgent need for Islam's reform, especially in terms of teaching lay people and clerics. He also calls for an end to mutual excommunication (takfir) between Sunnis and Shias. Egyptian President al-Sisi chose to fight the Islamic state group after it beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, whom he called "Egyptian citizens" with full rights.
SAUDI ARABIA - ISLAM
For head of Al-Azhar, religious education reform is needed to stop Islamic extremismFor Ahmed al-Tayeb, it is urgent to come up with new educational programmes to avoid "corrupt interpretations" of the Qur'an and Sunnah. Islamic terrorism undermines the unity of the Muslim world. He blames Mideast tensions on a "new global colonialism allied to world Zionism". a speech by the Saudi king is read at the conference.
HONG KONG - CHINA - VATICAN
It looks like someone is trying to shout us down
by Card. Joseph Zen Ze-kiunThe widespread optimism concerning the dialogue between the Holy See and China is largely groundless. Some Chinese bishops unable to speak freely are asked "leading" questions. The key issues remain unresolved, namely episcopal appointments and the fate of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. Benedict XVI's Letter to Chinese Catholics, also cited by Pope Francis, provides guidelines. No agreement is better than a bad agreement. What happened to Msgr. Cosma Shi Enxiang and Msgr. James Su Zhimin? Hong Kong's bishop emeritus, champion of religious freedom in China, delivers a vibrant reflection.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.