The Swiss suicide agency Dignitas may not always deliver on its promise of a painless death. A Zurich newspaper has reported that a 43-year-old German woman with a brain tumour cried out in pain for four minutes after taking her lethal poison in November. She reportedly moaned “I’m burning; I’m burning” for four minutes before lapsing into a coma. And in 2004, another client spent three days in a coma before dying. The newspaper pointed out the contrast with the quick and dignified death promised by Dignitas. As recently as September, its head, Ludwig Minelli, told British parliamentarians that his organisation had helped more than 600 people to end their lives “without any complication”. “We help our members to make a risk and pain-free suicide,” he declared.
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