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French court Oks ending treatment of man in vegetative state

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PARIS (AP) — France’s highest administrative court has ruled that doctors can stop feeding and hydrating a man who is hospitalized in a vegetative state despite his parents’ objections.

Vincent Lambert was critically injured in a 2008 car accident and has been in a vegetative state since 2014. A team of doctors decided last year to stop giving him food and liquids.

The 42-year-old Lambert’s parents and wife disagree on whether to keep him alive artificially. His wife supports the doctors’ decision. His parents challenged it and a lower court ruled against them.

The appeals court agreed Thursday it would not be illegal for doctors to suspend artificial feeding. Europe’s top human rights court has also ruled Lambert’s treatment can be withdrawn.

The case has drawn nationwide attention amid debate over end-of-life practices.

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