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World Rallies in Support of Charlie Gard; UK Leaders Mum

07-05-2017
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Political and religious leaders across the world are rallying in support of Charlie Gard.

A U.S. hospital reportedly has offered to treat Gard for free in an eleventh-hour push to save his life.

The unnamed hospital made the offer following a tweet by President Trump on Monday saying the U.S. would be "delighted" to help the 11-month-old.

 

 

Gard suffers from a rare genetic condition called mitochondrial depletion syndrome. It's known to cause brain damage and muscle weakness.

A Vatican hospital also reached out, Monday, on behalf of Gard--offering to take the baby in and allow him to live with dignity until his natural death.

"We are close to the parents in prayer and, if this is their desire, willing to take their child, for the time he has left to live," said Mariella Enoc, president of Bambino Gesù Hospital, in a statement on Monday.

Leaders from other Washington, D.C.-based pro-life groups including Susan B. Anthony List, Concerned Women for America, Americans United for Life, Students for Life, and March for Life offered a joint statement:

"The idea that a government may override and block parents’ decisions about the care for a child is horrifying. In past situations of similar circumstances, the patient or their family has always had the option of finding alternative care and that’s exactly what Charlie’s parents have done. This is their child and they want to use money they have raised from private donors around the world to provide him access to a treatment option that has had some success with a related condition. It is chilling that the UK court is allowing the London hospital to deny the family this option, or even the option to bring Charlie to spend his last hours at home. Our two nations have a proud and enduring history of protecting individual rights and respecting home and family.  We strongly support the offer of our government to assist Charlie and his parents in this exercise of their natural rights."

Supporters also gathered on the steps of the British embassy in Washington D.C. to pray for Charlie's life. 

Rev. Patrick Mahoney, who helped organize the prayer vigil, says parents should have the right to fight for their children's lives. 

"Shouldn't parents have the right to decide what is best for their children?" Mahoney told CBN News. "Sadly, we're seeing this all over the world, particularly in developing countries. We are seeing hospitals and courts make decisions for parents."

Charlie's parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, faced a series of heartbreaking defeats in an effort to keep their son on life-support. The family received a final blow last week, when the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) denied their request to seek treatment in the United States. 

British Prime Minister Theresa May supports the court ruling, stating her support for the opinions of the doctors at Great Ormond Street, where Gard is being held, who say it's time to remove his life-support and allow him to die.

However, not only is the hospital ready to take Gard off life support--they're also blocking his parents efforts to take him home.

Nearly 174,000 people have signed an online petition for Gard to be released and, today, 37 members of the European Parliament signed an open letter to both the Prime Minister and Health Secretary of the UK voicing their concern over the "outrageous outcome of Charlie's case."

"The State, all its bodies and public authorities, are here for its citizens to help and protect them. This is the fundamental principle underlying modern democratic systems. How is it then possible that even today, in the 21st century, in times when we ourselves designate our era as one which respects fundamental values of life and human dignity, that the United Kingdom does not act in the best interest of its citizens? Is this truly the way we want to go?" said Miroslav Mikolášik MEP (EPP/SK), Chairman of the EPP Working Group on Bioethics and Human Dignity in the European Parliament who launched this initiative.

"We, the undersigned Members of the European Parliament, intend to answer with a clear 'NO' and strongly condemn the shameful conduct that undermines these values of our civilised society." 
 

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