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Philip Nitschke returns to Australia

AAP logoAAP 8/09/2016

Philip Nitschke, who burned his medical licence rather than stop advising terminally ill patients on suicide, is touring Australia before a major conference on "rational suicide".

Dr Nitschke, who now lives in the Netherlands, will host the two-day conference at Victoria's State Library in Melbourne later this month.

The conference, titled Voluntary Euthanasia to Rational Suicide, is run by Exit International, of which Dr Nitschke is founding director.

It will feature several experts on assisted dying and is being held amid a growing demand for information from elderly Australians, Dr Nitschke said.

The conference comes two decades after Darwin man Bob Dent, who was suffering from prostate cancer, underwent the first legal and voluntary lethal injection in the world, assisted by Dr Nitschke.

In November 2015 Dr Nitschke set fire to his medical licence after the Medical Board of Australia said he could not remain a practising doctor if he continued to advise patients on euthanasia methods.

South Australian police last month closed a case into the death of a cancer sufferer connected to a drug tested at one of Exit International's labs in Adelaide after a two-year investigation. No charges were laid.

Dr Nitschke, who wants euthanasia law reform in Australia, will also host workshops across Australia before and after the conference.

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