Page last updated at 17:43 GMT, Monday, 15 March 2010

Suicide workshop held in central London

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Suicide workshop held in London

A euthanasia advocate dubbed "Doctor Death" has held a workshop in London, advising elderly people about ways to take their own lives.

Dr Philip Nitschke, who runs Exit International, which informs people how to end their own lives, spoke at Dragon Hall in central London.

About 100 people turned up to hear the Australian doctor speak.

"It's a highly moral process that gives a person access to the information that allows them to have choice," he said.

Under the recently amended 1961 Suicide Act, it is illegal to encourage or assist the suicide of another, but Dr Nitschke held his event regardless.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said it had not investigated Dr Nitschke and had not received any complaints about him.

Dr Philip Nitschke
Dr Philip Nitschke has held workshops in London and Bournemouth

The doctor was interviewed by the Home Office on arrival in the UK earlier this month and given permission to stay.

Dr Nitschke has said about 5,000 people in the past year have attended such courses around the world.

Dr Nitschke, from Darwin, was the first doctor in the world to administer lethal injections to end four patients' lives after voluntary euthanasia was made legal in the Northern Territory of Australia in 1996.

The Australian federal government overturned the law nine months later.

Do people have the right to learn about ways to end their lives? Email us at BBC London



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