Further information on medical letter writing action (ASA 38/11/91, 8 July and ASA 38/04/92, 20 March) – Taiwan: Executions and organ transplantation

AI has for some time been concerned about the removal of organs from prisoners executed in Taiwan for use in transplants. The first such case occurred in December 1990, after the introduction of legislation permitting the practice the previous October. AI communicated its concerns about the ethical issues involved to both the government and medical associations and hospitals in Taiwan. Responses have been received from different quarters, which, however, present conflicting views as to whether this practice continues. Letters from two medical associations in Taiwan have stated that executed prisoners are no longer used as a source of organs. However, letters from the Department of Health and from two hospitals make no reference to a halt to this practice.

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