President Donald Trump spoke out on Monday about the tragic case surrounding 10-month-old Charlie Gard, a British baby who suffers from a rare condition called mitochondrial depletion syndrome.
Trump’s tweet offering to help the family follows news last week that the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) effectively decided that Charlie cannot seek treatment in the United States as his parents have fought for and will instead “die with dignity” in the U.K. hospital where he has been cared for.
“If we can help little #CharlieGard, as per our friends in the U.K. and the Pope, we would be delighted to do so,” Trump tweeted on Monday morning.
If we can help little #CharlieGard, as per our friends in the U.K. and the Pope, we would be delighted to do so.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2017
As Faithwire previously reported, mitochondrial depletion syndrome, which is quite rare, affects the part of the cell that supplies energy to his muscles, kidneys, and brain.
Reports say that the baby can’t move, cry, swallow, see or hear, with doctors seeking to remove him from life support.
But Charlie’s parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, have fought hard to bring their son to the U.S. for experimental treatment. Locked in a brutal legal battle with doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London, they lost their final appeal when the ECHR refused to hear their case last week.
The family has reportedly raised $2 million to bring their son to America for the experimental treatment.
To defend human life, above all when it is wounded by illness, is a duty of love that God entrusts to all.
— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) June 30, 2017
In the wake of the family’s latest court loss, both Trump and Pope Francis have spoken out in favor of allowing Charlie to seek additional treatment in the U.S. A statement from the Vatican press office said that the pontiff is “following with affection and sadness the case of little Charlie Gard and expresses his closeness to his parents.”
The Catholic Church’s statement went on to say, “For this he prays that their wish to accompany and treat their child until the end is not neglected.”
Chris Gard and Connie Yates apparently haven’t given up hope, with the website CharliesFight.org featuring the tweets from both Trump and Pope Francis along with a pointed message: “The World Is Watching. Two of the most powerful men in the world want to give Charlie Gard his chance.”
The grieving parents also released a video on June 29 in which they reacted to the court’s decision, lamenting the loss of their parental rights and the inability to bring their child home to die. The video said that Charlie would die in the hospital on June 30, though it appears the child is still alive.
“If he’s still fighting, we’re still fighting,” Chris Gard proclaimed in the clip. “Our parental rights have been stripped away.”
Find out more about Charlie’s fight here.