Pope concerned over Luxembourg's "wicked" euthanasia bill
Pope Benedict XVI appealed Thursday to lawmakers in Luxembourg not to pass legislation legalizing euthanasia, or doctor-assisted suicide, reported dpa.
Political representatives need to remember that a "deliberate decision to deprive innocent humans of their lives is always wicked from a moral point of view," Benedict said.
The pontiff made the remarks during a speech in which he accepted the credentials of Luxembourg's new ambassador to the Vatican, Paul Duehr.
Last week the Vatican issued a set of instructions on bio-ethical issues that reiterated and formalized the Roman Catholic Church's stance against abortion, euthanasia, and medical procedures involving the use and destruction of human embryos, including embryonic stem cell research and in vitro fertilization.
In Luxembourg, the head of state, Grand Duke Henri, a devout Catholic, has refused to give his royal blessing to the euthanasia law, prompting parliament last week to strip him of his power to formally approve legislation adopted by the legislature.
The Duke's stance recalled a similar one adopted in 1990 by another Catholic monarch, Belgium's King Baudouin, who refused to sign an abortion law. Baudouin was reduced to the rank of a commoner for a few days while the bill was passed, and then restored to his position as head of state.