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Brain-dead Texas woman taken off life support

Fort Worth, Texas

Brain-dead woman taken off support

A brain-dead, pregnant Texas woman's body was removed from life support Sunday, as the hospital keeping her on machines against her family's wishes acceded to a judge's ruling that it was misapplying state law. Marlise Munoz's body soon will be buried by her husband and parents, after John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth announced it would not fight Judge R.H. Wallace Jr.'s Friday order to pronounce her dead and return her body to her family. The 23-week-old fetus she was carrying will not be born. The hospital's decision Sunday brings an apparent end to a case that became a touchstone for national debates about the beginning and end of life, and whether a pregnant woman who is considered legally and medically dead should be kept on life support for the sake of a fetus. Munoz's husband, Erick Munoz, sued the hospital because it would not remove life support as he said his wife would have wanted in such a situation.

Ukraine

Protests spread after proposal is rejected

After President Viktor Yanukovych failed to defuse Ukraine's political crisis by offering concessions to opposition leaders, anti-government protests Sunday spread into southern and eastern Ukraine, the heart of the embattled president's political base.

The growing unrest raised the prospect of widening violence and deepening political chaos while conditions in Kiev, the capital, continued to deteriorate. Antigovernment forces late Sunday night occupied the Justice Ministry headquarters.

On Saturday, Yanukovych had offered to dismiss the government and install one opposition leader as prime minister and a second as a deputy prime minister.

Elsewhere

Egypt: The military-backed government on Sunday said presidential elections would be held by mid April, in what authorities described as a milestone on the path to democracy. In another development, militants shot down a military helicopter in the Sinai Peninsula with a surface-to-air missile, raising alarms about the insurgency that developed there after the military takeover.

U.S. Virgin Islands: U.S. health officials on Sunday boarded Royal Caribbean International's Explorer of the Seas to investigate an illness outbreak on the cruise ship that has stricken at least 300 people with gastrointestinal symptoms including vomiting and diarrhea.

Times wires

Brain-dead Texas woman taken off life support 01/26/14 [Last modified: Monday, January 27, 2014 12:24am]
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[Times file photo]