Europäischer Gerichtshof für Menschenrechte: Verhandlung über deutschen Sterbehilfefall 23.11.2010

23 November 2010 at 9 a.m: Chamber hearing in the case Koch v. Germany (application no. 497/09) The applicant, Ulrich Koch, is a German national who was born in 1943 and lives in Braunschweig. The case concerns the German authorities’ refusal to grant his late wife authorisation to acquire a lethal dose of medication enabling her to commit suicide. After falling in

front of her doorstep in 2002, Mr Koch’s wife suffered from almost complete paralysis, so that she needed artificial ventilation and constant care from nursing staff. She therefore wished to end her life by committing suicide. In November 2004, she made a request with the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices to grant her authorisation to obtain the lethal dose of medication enabling her to commit suicide at home. The institute refused to grant her that authorisation, finding that her wish to commit suicide contravened the German Narcotics Act, which aimed at securing the necessary medical care of the population. Mr Koch and his wife appealed against the decision. On 12 February 2005, his wife committed suicide in Switzerland, assisted by the organisation Dignitas ...

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