[Update: 9/2] Ashya King’s parents have been released from prison after the arrest warrant was withdrawn.
A brain tumor victim is allegedly being treated with cruelty by a hospital and the U.K. and Spanish governments. Five-year-old Ashya King’s grandmother is accusing the hospital of not giving the boy the treatment that may save his life.
It seems Ashya is in the middle of a legal battle as well. The dispute between the British government and the parents is over the type of treatment the child is receiving and visitation rights. His parents were arrested Sunday in southeastern Spain after Interpol issued an arrest warrant at the request of British police.
Brett and Naghemeh King were arrested for removing him from the hospital where he was being treated because the procedure which they felt he needed wasn’t being made available. The couple was accused of kidnapping and neglect, though the official charges haven’t been made public.
His brother posted a video explaining their side of the story:
“We were most disturbed today to find that his face is all over the Internet and newspapers, and we’ve been labeled as kidnappers, putting his life at risk, neglect.”
“We’re very happy with his progress. We’re not neglecting him.”
“We’ve got loads of these feeds here. We’ve got iron supplements and we’ve got Calpol. As you can see, there’s nothing wrong with him. He’s very happy, actually. Since we took him out of hospital, he’s been smiling a lot more. He’s been very much interacting with us.”
The treatment that the hospital was refusing to use on Ashya King’s brain tumor is called Proton Beam Therapy. This science-fiction sounding treatment directly sends radiation to a specific area without indiscriminately killing surrounding healthy cells. Allegedly, the hospital claims such treatment could have unintended side effects and may do more damage than the brain tumor. It is currently only used to treat cancer in the eyes.
After Ashya’s parents were arrested, the authorities took the boy back to the Malaga hospital in Spain and are refusing to allow visits. Ashya’s grandmother stated that the authorities are “the ones who are cruel, because they have taken poor little Ashya, who is dying of a brain tumor, and they won’t let the parents, my son and daughter-in-law, they won’t let them see him at all.”
Ashya King’s parents are fighting the order to return to the U.K.. They are currently being held for 72 hours, after which the judge could extend their detention or release them for extradition.
Is the government right to refuse treatment which could eliminate young Ashya King’s brain tumor or is he the subject of cruelty?
[image via UK Today]