spokesman, Angela Maria Jaramilla, said Jorge Leon Escudero of
Valladolid “contacted us through email asking for our help. We
gave him ‘technical’ information in accord with Spain’s current health
for “public recognition” of individuals such as Jorge Leon and Ramon
San Pedro—another handicapped man who committed suicide with the help
of a relative in 1998—“who have lent their names in order to bring this
struggle into society.”
The president of
RDD, Fernando Marin, said helping to end the life of someone “who
irreversibly suffers a deteriorated life is an appropriate act of
compassion for a civilized society in which the freedom of each human
being is respected.” Those who help others free themselves of
“absurd suffering” should have “great reason to be proud of this act of
compassion toward one’s neighbor,” he sated.
53, who was left a paraplegic after an accident seven years ago, was
found dead in his wheelchair and disconnected from the artificial
respirator which helped keep him alive. On his internet blog he
had recently indicated his interest in contacting someone who would
“lend a helping hand” in ending his life.
In the wake of
Leon Escudero’s death, numerous associations have publicly announced
their support, not only for euthanasia, but also for pressuring
government leaders and influencing public opinion on the issue.
for the Federation of Associations for the Defense of Public Health,
Javier Gonzalez, said that euthanasia is an inalienable right
equivalent to the right to life and that the government was burying its
head in the sand by claiming it is not yet time to debate the issue.
Association of Progressive Doctors claimed this week that Spaniards
“are now ready” to have the debate on euthanasia “as soon as
possible”. The group said cutting short the lives of those
suffering from incurable or terminal illnesses is a “fundamental right
in any secular, plural and democratic state.”
that someone assisted Leon Escudero in killing himself although the
final results of an autopsy have not yet been obtained.
pro-euthanasia group “Right to Death with Dignity” (RDD) publicly
admitted this week that it provided “technical information” to help a
paraplegic man “end his life.”