Church representatives speak against proposal to legalise euthanasia

Czech church representatives have spoken out against a plan to legalise euthanasia in the Czech Republic. The joint declaration was signed by 18 public figures including the Roman Catholic priest and philosopher Tomáš Halík, the chief rabbi of the Czech Republic, Karol Sidon, and Bishop Václav Malý. The bill on legalising euthanasia by doctors under certain circumstances and under strict conditions was put forward by the ruling ANO Party and the opposition Pirate Party. It should be debated in the lower house by March 2020.

The signatories of the petition argue that legalising euthanasia would put the Czech Republic on a slippery slope, because it is hard to regulate and those concerned may find themselves under psychological pressure to end their lives.

The proposal has already been criticised by the Czech Bishops Conference, the Ecumenical Council of Churches, the Federation of Jewish Communities and the Association of Muslim Communities in the Czech Republic.

Author: Ruth Fraňková