Supreme Court to hear appeal of doctor-assisted suicide case

(Fotolia)

(Fotolia)

Daniel Proussalidis, Parliamentary Bureau

, Last Updated: 2:34 PM ET

OTTAWA ─ The highest court in Canada agreed Thursday to hear an appeal of a decision that denied Canadians the help of a doctor to die.

In 2012, a B.C. judge allowed exceptions to the Criminal Code ban on assisting suicide, so doctors could help patients take their own lives, or intentionally cause patients' deaths.

The feds won an appeal of that decision last October, but now the B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) will re-argue the case before the Supreme Court of Canada.

The BCCLA says it will argue that the right to control "when and how to die "¦ cannot be unnecessarily interfered with by the state."

Justice Minister Peter MacKay says that argument has failed before.

"The Supreme Court of Canada acknowledged the state interest in protecting human life and upheld the constitutionality of the existing legislation 20 years ago in the Rodriguez decision," MacKay said in a statement.


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