A Malaysian couple living in Norway who lost custody of their children following an investigation by authorities relating to an allegation of abuse involving their child have claimed trial.
The couple, Hairi Muhamad, 42, and Norliha Khamis, 42, got into trouble with the local authorities after one of their offspring complained to the authorities of having to fast for long hours.
The family have been living in Stord, Norway for the last 10 years where the father of the children works as a welder.
The couple have five children aged between four and 16 and have lost custody of them since May.
According to reports, one of the children told a teacher the long hours of fasting during the last Ramadan had caused stress while another child claimed to have been beaten.
The teacher then thought the child was being abused and launched a complaint with the authorities and the investigation led to the trial.
A brother of the children’s father, Hasrol said during this period, the children have been placed under the temporary care of three non-Muslim families in Norway.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it is dealing with the matter and the Malaysian Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden is keeping a close watch on the development of the case.
In a statement to the media, the ministry known as Wisma Putra said, “The Malaysian Embassy has contacted the couple and rendered consular assistance in line with the Vienna Convention 1963.
“The embassy is also working with the relevant local agencies there to protect the rights and welfare of the family, including making sure their children will be placed with Muslim families,” the statement added.
Wisma Putra had also instructed Malaysian Embassy officials to attend and conduct a watching brief on the trial scheduled from Nov 4 to 6. -/TISG