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Home alone American children living on German charity in Abu Dhabi

Anjana Sankar /Abu Dhabi
anjana@khaleejtimes.com Filed on April 10, 2017 | Last updated on April 10, 2017 at 06.48 am
Home alone American children living on German charity in Abu Dhabi
The children were without food, out of school, and living alone in their apartment in Abu Dhabi.

(Phocalmedia)

Their mother, a divorced school teacher, was reportedly serving a term in Al Ain jail for a financial crime involving dud cheques.


Three American children in Abu Dhabi have been surviving on handouts from a German charity after their mom got imprisonsed, Khaleej Times has learned.

The children, aged 18, 11 and 7, were without food, out of school, and living alone in their apartment in the UAE capital since three months, according to the German Protestant Church in Abu Dhabi.

Their mother, a divorced school teacher, was reportedly serving a term in Al Ain jail for a financial crime involving dud cheques.

Pastor Moritz Drucker said a German Prisoner had informed the church about the plight of the children. "Their mother who was in Al Ain jail met another female prisoner, a German citizen. She is the one who reached out to us and also passed our contact details to the elder boy," Drucker told Khaleej Times.

"We have been helping the children through our volunteers who visit them regularly with food and other essential supplies." Drucker said he has also reported the matter to the American embassy. But the embassy declined to comment.

One of the German Church members who was closely involved with the case, said the children looked traumatic when he visited their apartment in a residential complex in Shakbout City, some 30 kms away from the city centre.

"They did not have any money or food. The children had not gone to school for months. The situation was terrible," said the German national who did not wish to be named.

"The two younger boys hardly spoke to me but they were worried about their mother. The elder boy, who is 18, said he and his siblings were afraid they would have to go back and live in a foster home in the US.

"They only have a grandmother as a relative, and she had apparently refused to take the children."

The volunteer said there was a Nigerian nanny who was at their house, when he visited the children. 

"She told me the parents of the children were divorced, and the elder boy and the other two children had different fathers.

"The children are barely in touch with their fathers, one of them who lives in the UAE. The nanny said the father of the younger children came once or twice to deliver some food supplies."

When Khaleej Times visited the villa complex, the family was not there. The watchman said the American woman was released from jail last week.

"They started living here only a few months ago. I don't know them that well. The one bedroom apartment is in the name of  the International school where she was working," said the watchman.

"As far as I know, she has lost her job, and she will have to move out of the apartment within a week. The US embassy officials and school authorities had come here a few days ago to discuss her eviction," said the watchman.

The school, where the woman was working as a grade 1 teacher, was not available for comment.

anjana@khaleejtimes.com

author

Anjana Sankar

Anjana Sankar is a UAE-based journalist chasing global stories of conflict, migration and human rights. She has reported from the frontlines of the wars in Yemen and Syria and has extensively written on the refugee crisis in Bangladesh, Iraq and Europe. From interviewing Daesh militants to embedding with the UAE army in Yemen, and covering earthquakes, floods, terrorist attacks and elections, she has come out scathe-free from the most dangerous conflict zones of the world. Riding on over 14 years of experience, Anjana currently is an Assistant Editor with Khaleej Times and leads the reporting team. She often speaks about women empowerment on her Facebook page that has 40,000 plus followers.





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