Murder trial inflames euthanasia debate

By Ma Yujia
0 CommentsPrint E-mail, April 28, 2011
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The prosecution of a man from Jiangxi Province on murder charges after he helped his friend commit suicide has aroused public controversy over the legality of euthanasia in China.

The pit Zeng Qingxiang dug in advance.

The pit Zeng Qingxiang dug in advance.

Zhong Yichun, a local resident of Shiqiao village in southern China's Jiangxi Province was arrested on suspicion of murder on November 2, 2010, after helping his friend Zeng Qingxiang commit suicide. Zeng's public trial proceedings began on April 2, 2011 and are still ongoing.

According to a Guangzhou Daily report, Zeng had been suffering from a rare mental illness that had caused him to experience fits of extreme pain. Zeng endured the debilitating condition for over 20 years to make ends meet for his family. After his children grew up and married, Zeng decided he wanted to die.

"On October 19, 2010, Zeng came to my home and told me that he had already bought lots of poison and had decided to commit suicide," Zhong said. "He hoped that I could bury his body after he took the poison and promised me 200 yuan."

Zhong reportedly refused Zeng multiple times but ultimately agreed to help his friend.

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