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Tafida Raqeeb: ‘Law should be revisited’, say parents

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Tafida Raqeeb: 'Law should be revisited', say parents

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PA Media

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Royal London Hospital experts believe Tafida Raqeeb has no chance of recovery

The mother of a brain-damaged girl says the law should be changed after the High Court ruled that her daughter could travel abroad for treatment.

Five-year-old Tafida Raqeeb has been on life support at the Royal London Hospital since suffering a traumatic brain injury in February.

The health chiefs tried to block attempts to take her to Gaslini Children's Hospital in Genoa, Italy.

Tafida's mother Shalina Begum said, "The law now needs to be revised."

The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which governs the "interests of the child is paramount" in all health decisions, was ratified in 2000.

Begum said the "country has evolved" since the law came into force.

Speaking on BBC Today, she called for a "clear law that says if there is a reputable hospital prepared to treat a child, there will be no blocking."

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Shelina Begum and her husband Mohammed Raqeeb said doctors in Italy will continue to treat their daughter unless she is diagnosed as dead in the brain.

UK experts have argued that any other treatment against Tafida suffering from cerebral hemorrhage would be useless.

The heads of the Barts Health NHS Trust, which runs the hospital in Whitechapel, argued that ending Tafida's life support is in their best interest.

Tafida's parents, both practicing Muslims, argued that Islamic law said only God could make the decision to end his life.

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Family Brochure

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Tafida suffered a traumatic brain injury in February

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that there was no justification for preventing the child from being taken abroad.

Begum said there had been a "complete breakdown" in the relationship with hospital doctors since the decision.

"We don't talk, we don't talk. They just pass," she said.

A spokesman for the Department of Health and Welfare said: "Decisions on withdrawing treatment are never easy, and it is important that families and medical specialists come to an agreement in the best interests of the child.

"Where this is not possible, as in this sad case, it is certain that the courts will be asked to make a decision."

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