Wednesday, December 23, 2015

"Please save little Malak" - mother's plea as four-year-old Syrian refugee faces dying from blood disorder

(Also earlier wrote about her here:

A Syrian refugee girl faces dying of a rare blood disorder in a Lebanese shack after being denied European medical aid - just one among thousands feared at severe risk this winter.
Four-year-old Malak, left desperately weakened by her condition, is just about surviving in a makeshift tent after crossing the border from civil war-torn Homs.
The medication she needs - exjade deferasirox - would cost the NHS upwards of £69 per week but her mother Yasmine has been ordered to hand over $1,200 (£800) by her only local suppliers.
Malak’s cause has now been backed by Liberal Democrats leader Tim Farron, who is also pressurising the government to improve their direct help for Syrian refugees in dire need.

He has tabled a Commons motion urging Britain to offer refuge to 3,000 unaccompanied Syrian children currently vulnerable - a call in alliance with the charity Save The Children.
Having been diagnosed with thalassemia - an especially severe strain of anaemia - Malak has needed not only regular medication but also frequent blood transplants.
She not only suffers from jaundice but also has little strength nor appetite, while also being particularly vulnerable to infections, having been diagnosed when aged four months.
She has been given special permission to attend local school classes if only to allow her a little camaraderie and acceptance from fellow children.
But her worried mother - who also has a one-year-old son Rakan - fears the winter could prove lethal as temperatures look set to plunge as low as -15C and medicine prices surge out of reach.
Yasmine - reluctant to give her surname for security reasons - has been begging officials in Lebanon for help. including pleas to be taken to Germany if only briefly for helpful surgery.
But she says authorities have rebuffed each attempt, telling her the demand from similar cases is just too high and that Malak’s plight has not been deemed serious enough.
The family live in an improvised tent in Akkar, just across the Lebanese-Syrian border, having escaped after being bombed out of their home in the Homs district of Baba Amar.
Seven family members all sleep in the one room in their tent, around its single stove.

Yasmine told Metro that aid agencies such as Save The Children were helping with food and oil supplies, as well as medical advice and improvements to their shabby shelter.
But she added: ‘If she doesn’t get some medicine she’s going to end up dead - is there anything worse than that?
‘I want to show the world that I have a very sad and sick daughter - and she really needs help.
‘I would be so thankful if anyone could - we just need the right treatment.’

Mr Farron said: ‘This story utterly breaks your heart and I heard stories like this when I was in Lesbos.
‘I am proud that the UK government is one of the biggest donators of aid and support, but I believe we can and must do more.
‘I believe we must opt into the EU relocation scheme and we must take 3,000 unaccompanied children who are alone in Europe without a family this Christmas.
‘Britain has always been a country with a big heart - it is time for the government to catch up with the public.’
Metro told earlier this week how Britain - second only to the US in aid contributions to Syrian refugees - is preparing to host a major funding and planning summit in February.
International development secretary Justine Greening vowed the UK would do all it could - and encourage other nations to pick up the slack as well - to help refugees left adrift in Syria and surrounding nations.

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