Australian state reaches brink of legalizing mercy killings

An Australian state parliament on Wednesday stepped closer to passing a voluntary euthanasia bill, 20 years after the country repealed the world’s first mercy-killing law for the terminally ill.

The Victorian Legislative Council passed the bill on doctor-assisted suicide 22 votes to 18, after hours of passionate debate that ended with several lawmakers in tears. The vote was the last significant hurdle to euthanasia becoming legal in Australia’s second-most populous state from 2019.

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