Alfie Evans has been granted Italian citizenship in a last ditch attempt to save his life.
The 23-month old, who is terminally ill, was scheduled to be taken off life support earlier today despite his parent’s pleas to allow him a transfer to Italy where doctors will do ‘anything to keep him alive’.
Italy’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced this afternoon they had granted the toddler citizenship after a politician in the country pleaded them to.
According to the Liverpool Echo, an official statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy’s website reads:
Ministers Alfano and Minniti have granted Italian citizenship to little Alfie.
In this way the Italian government hopes that being an Italian citizen will allow the child immediate transfer to Italy.
Italian journalist and politician, Giorgia Meloni, thanked the Italian president for making the decision.
It’s one of those days when you remember that politics can make you do great things.
[As a] Mum, Italian and president of the party I thank the President-in-office of the council and ministers Alfano and LICR for having accepted my appeal and decided to grant Italian citizenship to Alfie Evans.
This will allow us to open a window to allow the child to come to Italy and be welcomed into one of our hospital facilities.
To Parents Thomas and Kate: we wish to see you in our nation soon.
Thomas Evans and Kate James are the parents of little Alfie Evans who fell ill in 2016 when he contracted a chest infection, triggering a spiral of different illnesses.
After being taken to hospital for treatment of his chest infection, Alfie began having severe epileptic seizures and was diagnosed with bronchitis, the common cold, a chest infection, RSV [respiratory syncytial virus], pneumonia and two other illnesses which left him exhausted.
— CapitalLivNews (@CapitalLivNews) April 23, 2018
Alfie’s Army, a Facebook group dedicated to raising awareness for Alfie by all means necessary has received a lot of media attention as of yet – with many arguing the group are doing little more than creating bad press.
Up to 200 people have been protesting outside Alder Hey Children’s Hospital after European human rights judges rejected a plea to intervene from his mum and dad.
In one video taken believed to have been taken earlier today, protestors were refusing to allow people to drive past the hospital without beeping their horn.
— North West News (@HeartNWNews) April 23, 2018
At the beginning of 2017, Alfie’s parents were told he would only have hours to live, but he defied all expectations and fought off three infections.
Despite ‘coming off life support three times’ and managing to take breaths here and there, the parents claimed doctors at Alder Hay Hospital suggested it was best to switch off Alfie’s life support machine.
Hopefully this move will bring about the best course of action to ensure Alfie continues to live.
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Joseph Loftus is a Gold Standard NCTJ journalist with four years experience working for international and regional press.
As well as working for UNILAD and LADbible, Joseph has worked as Liverpool Correspondent for Unsigned & Independent Magazine, as well as stints with the Liverpool Echo and Warrington Guardian.