1 King’s Bench Walk is again running a child abduction conference in London early next year. There is no programme as yet but places can be booked here. I have arranged to go, for what will be the 4th year running, and will post about it afterwards.
A child whose parents reside in different States shall have the right to maintain on a regular basis, save in exceptional circumstances personal relations and direct contacts with both parents.Article 10, sub section 2.States Parties shall take measures to combat the illicit transfer and non-return of children abroad.Article 11, sub section 1.
Number of Scots children abducted by overseas parents soars Campaigners have called for a change in Scots law to protect children
Published: 06:00 Friday 03 November 2017
Campaigners have stepped up calls for a change in Scots law to tackle international abductions of children by a parents overseas after new figures revealed a soaring number of cases in the past decade. Dozens of new “international abduction” cases happen every year in Scotland having previously stood in single figures in 2007. The practice has been branded “child abuse” by campaigners who say there is a “stark difference” between Scotland and England over the issue. It is a criminal offence south of the Border. In Scotland, police cannot act until a court order has been obtained – which can take anywhere between a day and a week. The figures revealed by justice secretary Michael Matheson in a Parliamentary answer yesterday shows that there were 33 cases parental child abduction for Scotland in 2016. Although this is down from the 41 cases recorded in 2015, it is nonetheless a marked increase from the eight cases recorded in 2007. Most involved cases of children being taken out of Scotland, which reached a new high of 20 last year – up from two in 2007. India, Australia, the USA, Italy and Poland are among the countries where children have been taken, according to support charity Reunite International. Solicitor Yousif Ahmed is now calling for a change in law which would mean parents not needing to go through the lengthy process of securing a court order before police can act. “That’s not fit for purpose – all it takes is a few clicks of a mouse button to book a same-day flight and the child can potentially be gone and lost forever,” he said. Many parents won’t be aware that an abduction is looming which means they won’t be in a position to secure an interdict. Mr Ahmed is to meet Scottish Government officials to push for change. Vicky Mayes of Reunite International said it’s a particular problem for Scots parents who fear an abduction may be imminent. “It’s so stark, the difference, when you’re advising one parent in England and one parent in Scotland. There can be such a difference in what the police can do and what can be done to stop a child from being abducted and therein minimise the impact of all of this on that child.”
Another summer ends. Your 6th in Japan in a row. It’ll soon start cooling down again so no more sweltering walks to the station/school until 2018.
Here is a short UK update for you.
Today marks the 20th anniversary of the death of Diana Princess of Wales; it made news around the world at the time and there has been a lot in the media over it this summer. I clearly remember when I found out; I was back home in Everton for the summer after the end of my first year at university. My mum told me in the kitchen when I went down to make coffee.
As I posted yesterday, our Prime Minister is currently on a trade mission to Japan. My repeated requests to the Foreign Office in the UK to lobby the Japanese government much harder and more publicly on the issue of parental child abduction have not to date been heeded and I fear that such issues will not be on Mrs May’s delegation’s visit. As such I yesterday put in a freedom of information request to find out why this continues to be the case and when this will change. I will update the blog in the coming weeks as soon as I receive a response.
I spent a couple of days with Dad up in Edinburgh, Scotland, over the late August national holiday. It is a fantastically beautiful city also with much on offer around it in the surrounding, mountainous countryside. We concentrated mainly on the city centre but did manage to get the bus out to the Royal Yacht Britannia now moored in Leith, a coastal suburb of Edinburgh.
Dad celebrates his 89th birthday next month and everyone is meeting up, as we did last year, at the Boathouse down in Hythe to mark the occasion. Plans are also being tentatively developed for his 90th birthday in 2018.
Less positively, both my aunt Diana and your Great Grandma have recently been diagnosed with cancers. Diana is responding very well to treatment as it was caught early – she is expected to make a full recovery – but Grandma is still waiting for a full medical assessment.
Your UK cousin, Olly, is doing well. He celebrated his first birthday in April and my sister returned to work at about the same time.
I have mailed you the items below in two tranches, one today and one on 24 August. These include a genuine Edinburgh/Cashmere scarf – I tried it on before sending it to you and it is very soft and fluffy and will, I trust, help keep you warm this winter.
PM heads to Japan to build strong post-Brexit relationship with Tokyo
The Prime Minister begins a new era of strengthening Britain’s ties and influence in Asia with an ambitious three-day trip to Japan.