Euthanasia: Its legality up to Parliament

SINGAPORE - When Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon delivered the Singapore Medical Association's annual lecture titled Euthanasia: A Matter Of Life Or Death?, he made it clear it is for Parliament to decide if voluntary euthanasia, or assisted suicide, is to be allowed in Singapore. But the choice is a complicated one, requiring plenty of debate. He highlighted the example of Singaporean lawyer Suzanne Chin to show that even science did not have all the answers.

After she collapsed in Hong Kong in 2009, her family was informed she was brain dead. Her husband was advised to switch off the ventilator as there was no hope of recovery. Three days later she revived and eight days later she was discharged.

"I make these points to make the point that there are limits to what we know and what science can tell us," said CJ Menon, who explained that issues relating to accelerated and assisted dying were profound, with so many deeply different views that no "categorical conclusion" might be reached.


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