CNA Staff, Dec 14, 2020 / 10:30 am
An Austrian Catholic archbishop expressed dismay after the country's top court ruled that assisted suicide should no longer be a criminal offense.
In a Dec. 11 statement, Archbishop Franz Lackner said that the court's judgment that the ban on assisted suicide was unconstitutional was a fundamental "cultural breach."
"Up until now, every person in Austria could assume that their life was considered to be unconditionally valuable -- up to their natural death. With its decision, the supreme court removed an essential basis for this consensus," said the president of Austria's Catholic bishops' conference.
The constitutional court argued in its Dec. 11 ruling that the country's criminal code is unconstitutional because its ban on assisted suicide violates the right to self-determination. It ordered the government to lift the prohibition in 2021.