April 24, 2024

First euthanasia campaign in Indonesia

The husband of a woman brain-damaged in childbirth has launched Indonesia’s first euthanasia campaign. Hasan Kusama, of Bogor, south of Jakarta, says that his wife Agian Nauli Siregar received inappropriate medication during a caesarean section for her third child and is now in a “vegetative state”. Kusama is now suing to have her unplugged from her life support system. He argues that the state has denied her right to life by refusing to exempt him from soaring medical bills.

Kusama is unlikely to win much support in Muslim Indonesia. “From an Islamic point of view, euthanasia is basically a murder,” says Ma’ruf Amin, of the Indonesian Council of Muslim Scholars. Kusama may have more luck with another project: an association for the growing number of victims of medical malpractice. “The health system is very bad in Indonesia and there’s no adequate protection for patients,” says Iskandar Sitorus, of the Legal Aid Foundation for Health. “Doctors are very powerful here.”