July 28, 2021

activist Alain Cocq died in Switzerland at the age of 58 by assisted suicide

Affected by an orphan and incurable disease, Alain Cocq had asked Emmanuel Macron in 2020 for “active assistance” to die. He benefited from an assisted suicide on Tuesday in Switzerland.

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He only wanted to die. Alain Cocq had made himself known for the fight of his life, that of being able to die with dignity, painless. The 58-year-old man, originally from Dijon (Côte-d’Or), died Tuesday, June 15 in Switzerland by assisted suicide, announced his relatives to AFP. Suffering from an incurable orphan disease, he had asked the French authorities in 2020 to offer him “active assistance to die” and so end his suffering.

“Alain Cocq died this morning at 11:20 am. In Bern (CH), according to his wishes, with dignity. Rest in peace at last Alain”, said on Facebook one of his relatives, Sophie Medjeberg. Before dying, he wrote an open letter addressed to the President of the Republic, to the government and to parliamentarians, informing “hereby, to [s]we die with dignity, as part of an assisted suicide procedure in Switzerland “.

Diagnosed at the age of 23 of an incurable and painful disease, Alain Cocq could not benefit from the law in force, called Claeys-Leonetti, adopted in 2016. The latter, which allows “deep and continuous sedation, up to death”, applies only for people whose vital prognosis is engaged “in the short term”, which was not the case. Thetireless activist had called in 2020 President Emmanuel Macron to authorize the medical profession to prescribe pentobarbital, a powerful barbiturate that would have allowed him to “leave in peace”. Faced with his refusal, he had twice attempted to die by ceasing all hydration, diet and treatment.