The Care Not Killing Alliance, representing over 40 organisations, has today welcomed a court ruling preventing the removal of food and fluids from a severely brain-damaged woman.

Justice Baker of the Court of Protection ruled that artificial nutrition and hydration should not be withdrawn in the case of M, a woman who is in a minimally conscious state as a result of an episode of encephalitis in 2003.

Dr Peter Saunders, CNK's Campaign Director said, 'This is a wise and sensible decision which upholds the law and maintains present levels of legal protection for severely brain-damaged people.'

'This woman was not imminently dying and did have some degree of awareness. A decision to remove artificial nutrition and hydration from her with the explicit intention of ending her life would have crossed an important ethical boundary and placed the lives of other disabled people at risk.'

'Any weakening of the law in this area would endanger the lives of vulnerable people and give encouragement to those who have an emotional or financial interest in their deaths. We welcome the clear signal that Justice Baker has given today'.