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Belgium may expel
홍명옥  aunnee
2015-06-08 16:10:37   HIT : 609

Belgium may expel ‘terminally ill’ Rwandan boy 
 
  

BRUSSELS Campaigners are calling for the Belgian authorities to reverse a decision that they say could led to the early death of a terminally ill five-year-old boy.

Joel Munezero suffers from bone dysplasia, a rare disease that prevents his bones from growing and his lungs from developing, and faces deportation to Rwanda.

On Wednesday, Joel’s classmates and teachers were among dozens of people who gathered in Brussels outside the immigration office to protest against his deportation and deliver a 12,000-signature petition calling for him to be allowed to remain in Belgium.

“We are here today so that Joel can live tomorrow,” Marielle Lambert, a curator at Joel’s school, told Anadolu Agency.

Joel arrived with his mother Uepo Epis in 2010 on a medical visa to seek treatment for his condition.

Two years later, the Belgian immigration office decided to return them to Rwanda, where Joel will not be able to receive the same level of care he currently gets in Brussels.

 

Using an article in Belgian law that grants terminally-ill foreigners residency if they cannot get comparable medical treatment in their home country, Epis appealed the decision but the authorities rejected the bid, saying medical reports suggested Joel was unlikely to suffer unduly if he returned to Rwanda.

“If we are sent back to Rwanda then my son will die,” Epis said. “The same quality of medical treatment cannot be provided in Rwanda.”

Joel is currently being treated at a children’s hospital in Brussels and has already undergone several operations.

His potential deportation comes as the EU is struggling to save migrants crossing the Mediterranean Sea.

The European Commission plans to resettle 40,000 Eritrean and Syrian migrants across the 28-member bloc in a move criticized by several member states, including Germany and France.

 

Reported by

KAGIRE Doreen 

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