Tech & Rights

DJ Fabo, Symbol of Euthanasia Fight, Dies Peacefully in Switzerland

"I would like to die without suffering. But in Italy, I cannot do it alone, and I need help," DJ Fabo said before his death in an appeal to Italian politicians to change the country's euthanasia law.

by Malika Bêche-Capelli
Fabiano Antoniani, a.k.a. DJ Fabo, was 40 years old and the victim of a road accident in 2014 that left him blind and quadriplegic.

'In the dark'

Before his death, DJ Fabo recorded a two-minute video on Youtube for Italian President Mattarella. As he was too weak to speak himself, his fiancée Valeria gave her voice to this appeal for help. After three years lying in the dark and numerous attempts to correct his injuries, Fabo described himself as "humiliated and in the dark" and says he can’t take it anymore, that he cannot live like this for decades.

He asked for advancements on the law for assisted suicide in Italy, which has been stuck in Parliament for three years. Six previous proposals to reform the law on euthanasia have already been rejected.

Italians seek peace abroad

Italy is one of the European countries with the worst legislation in terms of self-determination and euthanasia. In Italy, euthanasia is considered a homicide and heavily punished: prison sentences can be as long as 15 years.

In order to avoid criminality, Fabo, as many others before him, had to go to Switzerland, where he was accompanied by Marco Cappato of Associazione Luca Coscioni, to be able to die peacefully. According to some surveys, an average of 200 leave Italy to receive euthanasia every year.

A symbol for the right to die

DJ Fabo tried to help bring change in Italy so that he didn't have to suffer the humiliation of being transported to another country to die. But despite his pleas, there was no action by Italian politicians.

"Finally, I am in Switzerland, and, unfortunately, I got here on my own strength and not with the help of my state," said Fabo, in a video posted on Twitter.

After three years of struggle, DJ Fabo became a symbol of the fight for the right to a decent and peaceful death, which finally came on Monday, February 27, in Switzerland.

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