Sunday, 22 March 2015 12:44

Tragedy of five-year-old with Down’s syndrome now in a refugee camp

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However bad your day is today, spare a thought for five-year-old Ahmed Abdel Karim.

He was abandoned by his mother after she found he had Down’s Syndrome. A nurse offered his mum the chance to swap him for a healthy baby, in exchange for money. He’s now living in a refugee camp in Lebanon after fleeing Syria, but is in need of medical care. The youngster suffers from regular seizures and high fevers.
After finding him in the makeshift camp, 90 minutes north of Beirut, London-based pilanthropist Lynn Tabbara told The Telegraph: ‘He is an outcast twice over – thanks to his Down’s syndrome and his status as a refugee.’ After his mum cut a deal with the nurse, he was instead given to another woman, Halbiya Ali A Ali, whose real baby was stolen. Daniel Vais, who runs Culture Device Dance Project, an east London-based company for dancers with Down’s syndrome, told The Telegraph: ‘Our hearts are breaking for Ahmed, and we are particularly keen to get him to see a specialist doctor, and to buy him warm clothes and proper shoes. ”We know his past is tragic, but we are more concerned about Ahmed’s future. ‘He needs to be cared for by experts who understand Down’s syndrome and the associated conditions which could present.’ The charity has set up a fundraising page to support Ahmed.