Care Not Killing (CNK), the UK's leading anti-euthanasia campaign group, has welcomed the decision by the High Court today to reject the Tony Nicklinson and Martin cases.

Dr Andrew Fergusson, a spokesman for CNK said, "We welcome today's ruling by the High Court on the Tony Nicklinson and Martin cases, in which CNK intervened. The judgment strongly rejected the notion that voluntary euthanasia should be a defence in murder cases, saying this was not compatible with English Law, and the prohibition on assisted suicide in the UK is not contrary Article 8 of the European Convention.

"It recognises that changing the law is for Parliament alone. And it confirms the simple truth that the current law exists to protect those without a voice: the disabled, terminally ill and elderly, who might otherwise feel pressured into ending their lives.

"The Court examined in great detail the merits of the arguments for changing the law, drawing on the substantial volume of statute law, UK and European court rulings, debates in Parliament, the European Convention on Human Rights, evidence from advocates on both sides of the debate, and expert advice from professional regulatory organisations like the General Medical Council and Solicitors Regulation Authority.

"The three hugely respected and experienced judges, Lord Justice Toulson, Mr Justice Royce and Mrs Justice Macur, acknowledged cogently that while these are two tragic cases, it would be wrong for the court to change the current law, which has been debated and voted upon in Parliament frequently in recent years.

"The ruling confirms the view that even in a free democratic society there are limits to choice. Every law limits choice and stops some people doing what they might desperately wish to do, but this is necessary in order to protect others, especially the most vulnerable in our society.

"Hopefully the decision to reject both cases will now draw a line once and for all under legal debate and allow decision makers and society to focus attention on how we care for the terminally ill and severely disabled."

For media inquiries, please contact Alistair Thompson of Media Intelligence Partners Ltd on 07970 162 225, or 0203 008 8145.

For media inquiries, please contact Alistair Thompson of Media Intelligence Partners Ltd on 07970 162 225, or 0203 008 8145.


Editors Notes

Care Not Killing is a UK-based alliance bringing together over 40 organisations - human rights and disability rights organisations, health care and palliative care groups, faith-based organisations groups - and thousands of concerned individuals.

We have three key aims:

• to promote more and better palliative care;

• to ensure that existing laws against euthanasia and assisted suicide are not weakened or repealed;

• to inform public opinion further against any weakening of the law.

We seek to attract the broadest support among health care professionals, allied health services and others opposed to euthanasia by campaigning on the basis of powerful arguments underpinned by the latest, well-researched and credible evidence.