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104-year-old scientist David Goodall no more

Bern, May 10: David Goodall, a 104-year-old Australian scientist who had campaigned for the legalisation of assisted dying in his home country, ended his life at a Swiss clinic on Thursday, a representative from the pro-euthanasia group Exit International said.
Goodall, a respected botanist and ecologist, died at the Life Circle clinic in Basel, Switzerland, after administering a lethal drug under the guidance of doctors, ABC News Australia reported. Exit International, which represented the scientist, said Goodall passed away while listening to Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy”.
Euthanasia is illegal in Australia, thought the state of Victoria is planning to allow assisted dying from mid-2019. Goodall’s home state Perth is currently debating whether to introduce the policy. The story of the academic, who is one of the first Australians to undertake the procedure due to old age rather than a terminal illness, attracted international headlines and further inflamed a highly divisive debate. His supporters applauded his decision to take charge of his fate after declaring his life was no longer worth living. But critics warned his decision solely on the grounds of old age set a “dangerous precedent”. Goodall said he hoped his story would lead to the legalisation of assisted dying in other countries. “I’m looking forward to it,” he said of his imminent death. Several US states have a form of physician-assisted suicide, as do countries including Japan, Belgium and Switzerland. (IANS)