[QODLink]
Europe
Germany opposes death-drug sale
Health minister aims to prevent the sale of lethal-injection drugs to the US, where it is in short supply.
Last Modified: 22 Jan 2011 19:25 GMT
A shortage in supply has some US states scrambling to find sources or substitutes for the lethal-injection cocktail  EPA]

Germany's health minister is urging the nation's leading drug companies and distributors to ignore requests from the US for supplies of a vital drug used in lethal injections.

A spokesman for Philipp Roesler confirmed on Saturday the minister had written a letter to the nation's leading pharmaceutical companies, "urgently" appealing to them not to respond to requests from the US for the drug, sodium thiopental.

Supplies of the drug are growing short after the sole US manufacturer ceased production. It is still marketed in Germany as an anesthetic.

The shortage of the drug resulted in an Oklahoma inmate being put to death using a veterinary anaesthetic on December 16, 2010.

John David Duty was believed to have been the first to have been executed in a US prison using pentobarbital, a sedative which is also commonly used to euthanise animals.

Although German law does not prohibit sale of the drug abroad, Roesler urged drug companies to understand that its potential use in the US is not in keeping with German and European values.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
UNHCR says hundreds of people trapped in Yaloke town risk death if they are not evacuated to safety urgently.
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Featured
Long-standing dispute over Christian use of the word 'Allah' raises concerns about a very un-Merry Christmas.
The threat posed by ISIL has prompted thousands of young Kurds to join the PKK.
Baja California - with its own grim history of disappeared people - finds a voice in the fight against violence.
Russian feminist rockers fight system holding 700,000 - the world's largest per capita prison population after the US.
Weeks of growing protests against Muslims continue in Dresden with 15,000 hitting the streets last Monday.