They condemn two doctors in Germany for selectively killing a twin with brain damage in childbirth


The Provincial Court of Berlin condemned this Tuesday for homicide to two gynecologists at one year and six months and at one year and nine months probation for selectively kill a girl with brain damage during a twin cesarean delivery during the 32nd week of pregnancy.

The court considered it proven that the two gynecologists – a chief physician and a department head now retired from a Berlin hospital – helped a 27-year-old patient on July 12, 2010 to give birth to a healthy girl by caesarean section, but what "they consciously killed their twin sister with an injection of potassium chloride. "

This second girl had severe brain damage which had already been detected during pregnancy, which is why their parents opted for a late abortion, the statement said.

However, instead of aborting the girl During pregnancy in the womb, what would have been "legally admissible and medically possible"The doctors, who are now 58 and 73 years old, decided to wait for the start of labor to perform the intervention.

After the first contractions, the gynecologists opened the uterus, removed the healthy girl and they killed the sick, although, according to an expert, it could have survived, which "must be legally considered homicide"said the judge who presides over the courtroom when arguing the sentence.

The two doctors acknowledged the facts, but noted that "due to the medical particularity of the case and in the interest of the healthy girl "they decided to refrain from a call "selective feticide", that is, to selectively kill one of the fetuses in the womb before the start of labor.

They added that they started from the base that their way of acting corresponded to legality because the girl was still in the womb (open) when they gave him the injection.

"We had no doubt that what we were doing was the right thing to do", the defendant explained today at the start of the trial – which takes place after an anonymous complaint – and added that in his decision "it did not weigh the legal aspect, but the healthy girl," according to the regional chain RBB.

The court, which considered this explanation unbelievable, argued that the defendants, as expert gynecologists, knew that they were legally no longer authorized to kill the sick child during caesarean section, because the birth had already begun.

In addition, at the time of the injection there was no conflict, because the healthy girl was already born And I was out of danger.

The defendants were rather guided by the will of the parents of not giving birth to a sick girl, despite having been able to survive.

However, "similar 'cleaning' of sick or disabled babies" it is not legally allowed, "said the judge.

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