Thursday 26 April 2018

Family of abducted boy 'being sent from pillar to post'

Norma Heeney, mother of six-year-old Faris Daniel, with sisters Amy and Kate outside the Egyptian Embassy.
Norma Heeney, mother of six-year-old Faris Daniel, with sisters Amy and Kate outside the Egyptian Embassy.
Emma Jane Hade

Emma Jane Hade

THE family of abducted six-year-old Faris Daniel Heeney have spoken about their disappointment in the Irish Government after their meeting with Egyptian diplomats.

Marian Heeney, the boy's grandmother, said that the family felt "very let down" by the lack of contact from the Government.

She has threatened to chain herself to Dail Eireann "if that's what it takes".

Marian was speaking as she emerged from the Egyptian Embassy in Dublin yesterday morning, after a meeting with their diplomats.

"We are just being sent from pillar to post."

The Heeney family said their life had been "on pause" since Faris was taken to Egypt in 2009 by his uncle Mostafa Ismaeil.

Mostafa is currently serving a six-year sentence for the abduction, and is due for release in April. Faris' father Amir Ismaeil fled Ireland two weeks after the abduction – while on bail facing a charge of sexual assault.

Faris remains in Egypt with his father in the family home in Tanta, north of Cairo. His heartbroken mother, Norma, said the last number of years had been "hell on Earth" without her son.

The family are not optimistic of any breakthrough from yesterday's meeting, as it has been their sixth time at the Egyptian Embassy. And they revealed that up until now they have had limited contact with the Irish Government.

"We have had two- and three-line letters just confirming your email, letter, call – saying 'we will get back to you'. One passes it to the other department saying it's nothing to do with them."

The family are now in genuine fear for the young boy's welfare, and want him home.

The Heeneys are due to meet Children's Minister Frances Fitzgerald next week.

Irish Independent

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