In a shocking pro-euthanasia campaign released on Wednesday, French president Nicolas Sarkozy is portrayed as a dying patient in a hospital bed in an effort to convince him to change his current stand against the legalization of euthanasia in France.
The text above the disturbing image reads: “Mr. Candidate, Must we put you in such a position to make you change yours in relation to euthanasia?”
The ‘Association pour le Droit de Mourir dans la Dignité’ (Association for the Right to Die with Dignity , also known as the ADMD) , which represents pro-euthanasia supporters, launched the controversial ad campaign in the French weekly Les Inrockuptibles to promote assisted suicide for terminally-ill patients.
In recent months, euthanasia has become a key issue in French presidential elections.
The debate on euthanasia in France came into the spotlight in August 2011 after a hospital doctor was charged with helping four elderly patients die.
Most French people support euthanasia. Polls have found more than nine people out of 10 (92%) in France support a law allowing euthanasia for those with incurable illnesses.
Currently, assisted suicide is illegal in France. ( Watch this France 24 video , which explains the current situation of euthanasia in France).
Sarkozy has become the main target of pro-euthanasia groups, particularly after he reconfirmed his position against euthanasia in a recent interview with Figaro Magazine:
“Legalized euthanasia could lead us to dangerous excesses and would be against our concept of the dignity of the human person.”
–Nicolas Sarkozy (Figaro Magazine interview, Feb. 11, 2012)
But Sarkozy isn’t the only candidate to serve as a model for the campaign. Far-right leader Marine LePen, who has stated her strict opposition to any softening of the law against euthanasia, is also featured:
Centrist candidate François Bayrou is also depicted:
In Proposition 21 of his campaign platform, Hollande states that:
“All adults in the advanced or terminal phase of an incurable illness, provoking unbearable physical or psychic suffering, and that can not be alleviated, can request, within precise and strict conditions, to receive medical assistance to end their life with dignity.”
The ADMD plans a public demonstration on March 24, where presidential candidates are invited to attend.
EXTRA: A brief pro-euthanasia video released by the ADMD in 2011: