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Father denies kidnap charge

A FATHER has denied abducting his children and bringing them to Bahrain last month. The Canadian citizen, who asked not to be identified, also denies stealing his wife's passport and leaving her stranded in Bahrain in January.

He was responding to a GDN report on Sunday, in which Ontario resident Nathasha Ibrahim accused her husband of kidnapping their children from their home in Canada.

She was granted temporary custody of their children by the Superior Court of Family Justice in London, Ontario, on February 25 - five days after they were brought to Bahrain by their father.

However, he provided the GDN documents that showed he had previously been granted temporary custody on February 9 by the same court, which said he could change the children's place of residence after giving his wife 15 days' notice.

"My court order from the Canadian courts stated that I could change the residence of the children if I informed their mother," he told the GDN yesterday.

"This notice was issued on February 9. I changed their residence from our house in Canada to my parents' house in Bahrain."

He said he did not abandon his wife in Bahrain in January after stealing her passport, which she had earlier claimed, and denied that an Interpol alert had been issued for him.

In fact, he said she was in prison when he left for Canada with his two children after she was allegedly arrested.

Official court documents show she was informed that her husband was bringing their children to Bahrain by e-mail, as well as in a written letter to her lawyer.

The father said that by the time his wife was released he had already filed for a divorce in Bahrain.

Unaware

"My family came to Bahrain all together in December 2010 for a family vacation, before my wife went to India alone for a 10-day holiday by herself," he said.

"When she came back, we went to Dubai together for a short couple's holiday and then returned to Bahrain."

He said while his wife was allegedly in custody, he and his two sons returned to Canada for the start of the school term.

"I had to take the children back to school and I was due to start work again on January 3," he said.

"Obviously, the children were not going to miss school."

He also denied claims that he stole his wife's passport, saying she had lost it herself.

Although he initially moved back to Canada with his sons, he said he decided to come back to Bahrain with his children last month to start a new life with his family here.

"On February 25 we arrived back in Bahrain," he said.

"This time coincided with my wife having been given emergency travel documents to Canada; which she used to fly back to the country on February 20."

He claimed he was unaware of a court order granting custody of their children to his wife, saying he had still not been notified.

"I am unaware of a second court order issued again dated February 25 which stated that my wife should have 'temporary' custody of the children and that they should not be taken from Canada," added the father.

"Till date we have not been served this court order either by e-mail or to our home address."

"In compliance with my court order and the change of residence, I came back to Bahrain with my children to start our new life.

"My children mean everything to me; I gave up my job, my car, my house and my friendships so that I could give them everything they need.

"I have a Master's degree and several professional certifications and I am also a recipient of a design patent by the US government.

"I gave up all my life's worth of striving for excellence just to ensure my children are raised appropriately."

He also claimed his sons were happy embarking on their new life.

"They are doing very well here in Bahrain and are due to start new schools soon," he said.

"They have been speaking to their mother at least two or three times a week." alicia@gdn.com.bh



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