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British man dies after losing legal battle to end his life

Other News Materials 22 August 2012 17:43
A British man suffering from total paralysis after a stroke has died a week after losing his legal battle for the right to end his own life, lawyers for his family said Wednesday.
British man dies after losing legal battle to end his life

A British man suffering from total paralysis after a stroke has died a week after losing his legal battle for the right to end his own life, lawyers for his family said Wednesday, DPA reported.

Tony Nicklinson, 58, died peacefully at his home following a "rapid deterioration" in his health after contracting pneumonia, his family added. He had refused food from last week.

Nicklinson, a businessman from Melksham, in the south-western county of Wiltshire, was left paralysed by a massive stroke during a trip to Athens in 2005.

He suffered from lock-in-syndrome, which left him completely paralysed and unable to speak or move.

Last week, the High Court in London rejected his legal challenge that he should be allowed to die - with the help of a doctor - in what was described as a "dignified suicide."

"I am saddened that the law wants to condemn me to a life of increasing indignity and misery," Nicklinson said in a statement afterwards.

The judges, while expressing "deep sympathy" for the case, said it would be wrong to depart from the long-established legal position that "voluntary euthanasia is murder, however understandable the motives may be."

Nicklinson's wife, Jane, said after the ruling that her husband was "absolutely heartbroken," and that he would seek a further appeal.

Asked what would happen if that failed, she said: "Tony either has to carry on like this until he dies from natural causes or by starving himself."

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