Dutch officials are preparing to widen the country’s euthanasia regulations, a change which would allow children aged between one and 12 to be killed with the help of physicians, The Guardian reports.
“The current Scheme for Termination of Pregnancy and Termination of Life for Newborns (LZA/LP) will be amended and expanded to include termination of life in children aged 1-12,” a post from the Dutch government earlier this month said.
Current Dutch law allows for euthanasia involving terminally ill babies until their first birthday and for children aged older than 12, Fox News reports.
According to the Dutch government, the proposed change would affect a “small group of terminally ill children who suffer hopelessly and unbearably, whose palliative care options are not sufficient to relieve their suffering and who are expected to die in the foreseeable future.”
In 2014, Belgium became the first country to allow children to seek euthanasia. Reports indicate that three children under 18 were euthanized in Belgium between Jan. 1, 2016, and Dec. 31, 2017.