Controversial euthanasia doctor in town

Dr Philip Nitschke
Dr Philip Nitschke

A CONTROVERSIAL doctor who runs workshops on euthanasia and assisted suicide for people who want to end their lives is holding a meeting in Eastbourne.

Exit International founder and leader Dr Philip Nitschke, an Australian physician, will hold a public meeting and seminar on Monday November 14 between 10am and 2pm at the Riviera Hotel in Marine Parade.

The public meeting at 10am will be open to all.

However, the seminar from 11.20am to 2pm is only open to people over 50 or those who are seriously ill and costs £40.

A spokesperson for Exit International said on Thursday Dr Nitschke was looking forward to meeting people in Eastbourne, particularly as previous attempts to hold meetings in the town have been cancelled.

He has tried for three years to come to Eastbourne to speak with interested people.

However in October 2008 the Langham Hotel cancelled a booking by Exit International and Eastbourne Borough Council also refused to let the organisation use any of its venues.

Earlier this year the organisation booked the Sovereign Harbour Yacht Club for February, but it too pulled the plug on the meeting.

An attempt to rearrange it at the Under Ground Theatre was also thwarted.

Exit International was founded by Dr Nitschke in 1997 after the overturning of the world’s first voluntary euthanasia law.

He was the first doctor to administer a legal, lethal, voluntary injection before it became illegal.

Monday’s public meeting will provide an outline of the legislative history and current political status of voluntary euthanasia and assisted suicide.

The seminar afterwards will give practical information about barbiturates, gases and poisons as well as risks, safety, legal issues and a question and answer session.