Ashya King reunited with his parents at Spanish hospital

Brett and Naghmeh King say they feared for their son ‘who hasn’t got many months to live’

Brett and Naghmeh King, parents of five year old Ashya King, hold a press conference at their lawyer’s office in Seville, Spain, today. Photograph:  Denis Doyle/Getty Images.

Brett and Naghmeh King, parents of five year old Ashya King, hold a press conference at their lawyer’s office in Seville, Spain, today. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images.


The parents of Ashya King have been reunited with their son.

Brett and Naghmeh King today saw the five-year-old, who has a brain tumour, for the first time since they were arrested on Saturday. It was tonight reported that they would not be permitted to remove the child from hospital.

A spokeswoman for the Materno-Infantil hospital in Malaga, where Ashya is being treated, said local authorities had received notification from British officials that the parents should not be allowed to take the boy away.

It was not clear which UK authority she was referring to.

The reunion initially appeared to be in doubt when Mr King claimed he would be barred from visiting the child after he was made a ward of court, but it was established that those proceedings do not stop the couple seeing him.

During a press conference in Seville today, the Kings told of their pain at being separated from the sick boy while they were held in prison.

Ms King said she had been “crying and crying” because she was unable to help her son.

Mr King said his heart was “aching” to see Ashya again and criticised their treatment since they removed him from Southampton General Hospital almost a week ago, saying they had been “treated like terrorists”.

He said being separated from the boy was difficult as he “hasn’t got too many months to live” and there was uncertainty about their son’s condition after they were detained.

“We said ‘You don’t even really know what’s wrong with him. He needs therapy on his legs, on his arms. You need to turn him from side to side’. But they’re not interested. They just want to take him away from us.”

As the couple left Seville, Mr King told Sky News he would be “happy to spend years in prison rather than my son being given treatment that’s going to kill him or disable him for the rest of his life.”

He said he would do the same thing again if it meant getting his son the right treatment.

“My son’s worth everything, worth me going to prison, worth everything because they were going to kill him in England or turn him into a vegetable.”

He claimed he had previously informed the hospital about his plans to seek proton therapy for his son but kept the date that he intended to take him secret for fear he would be stopped.

“I said to them ‘I’m going. The NHS is not going to pay, I’ve got to sort this out for my son’.”

Speaking outside Southampton General Hospital, Dr Peter Wilson, chief paediatrician, told Sky News that the family had made it clear that they would like to take Ashya to Prague but that the hospital had no idea the family had planned to leave.

He said the family were not keen on parts of the treatment which had been suggested and that there were discussions about different forms of treatment.

He said: “We had made it very clear what could be offered on the NHS.

“While were we having those discussions, the family made it very clear they would like to go to Prague.

“At no stage did they say they were going to take Ashya and go to Prague.”

He said that when they found he was missing from the hospital they were “slightly surprised” and said there was information they had not been able to share with the media which had “made us very worried for Ashya’s safety”.

Asked whether they had threatened Mr and Mrs King with an order which would have taken away their right to make decisions about their son’s care, he said: “Absolutely not. We absolutely disagree with that statement.”

British prime minister David Cameron told MPs that decisions taken in Ashya’s case were “not correct”.

Speaking at prime minister’s questions in the House of Commons, he said: “To be fair to the authorities involved in the case of Ashya King, they all want to do the best for the child. That’s what they are thinking of.”