Neighbors Complain Swiss Euthanasia ‘Clinic’ Parade of Dead Bodies Disturbing

by Hilary White

ZURICH, June 8, 2006 ( – A group of residents in a economically disadvantaged neighbourhood are sick of seeing body bags being carried out of their apartment block and are seeking to have the Dignitas euthanasia organization evicted from the premises.

In April, the UK’s Telegraph reported that the routine for people wanting to kill themselves with the help of DignitasÂbegins withÂarriving at the non-descript residential apartment block and ringing the bell for the fourth floor apartment. They are given a lethal dose of barbiturates and after they have died are carried out of the apartment in a body bag either in the elevator or down the stairs.

Residents said they have had enough of the gruesome proceedings going on so close to home. One woman quoted by the Telegraph said the Dignitas apartment is directly above hers.

Gloria Sonny, 53, told the Telegraph, “We call it the ‘House of Horrors’.”

“This is meant to be a residential flat but some days you’d think it was a morgue,” Sonny said. “The look in their eyes haunts me, particularly if they are young.” Sonny is collecting signatures to have the organization evicted.

Kelvin Leneveu, who lives on the floor below Dignitas with his girlfriend and their four year-old son, told the Telegraph, “It’s very creepy. The floors are thin and when we hear movements upstairs we know that means they’re up there, and someone’s going to die.”

Last week, the Swiss ruling party responded to pressure from MP’s saying that it saw no need to re-visit the growing practice of assisted suicide, or consider restrictions. Swiss Justice Minister Christoph Blocher said, “The cabinet had come to the conclusion that [new legislation] was not necessary.”

Dignitas has facilitated the deaths of at least 450 people, including 253 Germans and 84 Britons since its founding in 1998. Dignitas’ founder and owner, Ludwig Minelli, has said that people should be able to kill themselves with assistance for any reason or no reason and has plans to open a chain of death facilities to meet the growing demand for death.

Dignitas is a registered charity in Switzerland and has come under fire from every party but the Swiss ruling party for establishing the country as the world’s premier “death tourism” destination.

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