Beppino Englaro says he wants to release his daughter, Eluana, from "the inhuman and degrading condition" in which she has been "forced to exist" for 15 years, ANSA reported.
A Milan appellate court last year rejected his longstanding request that the feeding tube be removed from the 34-year-old woman, who has been called "Italy's Terri Schiavo," a reference to a U.S. case in which a Florida man ultimately was allowed to end life support for his comatose wife.
However, the Cassation Court ordered a retrial in the Englaro case, ruling a person's right to decide what medical treatment they receive should be respected even if it would cause death, the Italian news agency reported.
Eluana Englaro of Lecco was left in a vegetative state after being injured in a car crash in 1992.
Demetrio Neri of the National Bioethics Committee said the ruling was "important because it opens up a path." But Adriano Pessina, head of the bioethics center at Sacro Cuore Catholic University, countered that it "raises various serious doubts."