Damien, an eight-year-old child, taken by his father to Turkey, was this morning on an aeroplane headed for Munich (in Germany). He was accompanied by his Belgian mother. The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Didier Reynders, told the Belga press agency that the mother and her son will return to Belgium during the evening.
The child was taken by his Turkish father in July 2015, whilst travelling. The man obtained permission, from a Belgian family court, to take his son on holiday.
The court allowed this, despite protests from his ex-wife who feared parental kipnapping would occur.
Damien should have returned to Belgium on July 15th, 2015. However his father did not take him in the end. This meant that he was kept from his mother, who had no news of him.
His mother started proceedings for parental kipnapping. She also took several trips to Turkey attempting to find her son.
Mr Reynders stated that the joint efforts of the Federal Prosecutor’s Office, the charity Child Focus, as well as collaboration with the Turkish autorities finally allowed for a “happy ending.”
The Belgian Embassy in Ankara issued a “temporary passport” to the child. This has allowed him to return to Belgium with his mother.
Mr Reynders stated that the child’s mother has recently been in Turkey anyway. He concluded, “The child will therefore be able to return to Belgium via Munich.”