After many weeks of running the Armenian children Lili (12) and Howick (13) have been found. The children were fugitives because they had to go back to Armenia, but they resisted by running away. Current developments that took place have meant that the well-being and safety of the children can no longer be sufficiently guaranteed in Armenia. That’s why the decision was made that the children could stay in The Netherlands.
By Nienke Noordhuis, Sept. 17, 2018
Lili and Howick
Lili and Howick are two Armenian children who came to The Netherlands in 2008. The application of asylum that their mother was trying to arrange was constantly rejected but she kept fighting to keep her children in Holland.
A year ago Lili and Howick’s mother was sent back to Armenia. Lili and Howick stayed and ran away from the police. They didn’t want to go back to Armenia, because they were fully integrated in The Netherlands and their mother didn’t teach them the Armenian language. ‘’We don’t have any friends or family there’’ said Howick in Dutch television program Laat op één. They felt like they would be an alien in their own country.
The police and a lot of other people were worried about the wellbeing of Lili and Howick. For the police it wasn’t a manhunt, they wanted to find the children as soon as possible to guarantee their safety. The Netherlands and Armenia did what they could to arrange a solid shelter in Armenia for Lili and Howick. However, current developments that took place have
meant that the well-being and safety of the children can no longer be sufficiently guaranteed. This led the State Secretary (Mark Harbers) to decide, the kids can stay in The Netherlands anyway. Shortly after the decision was made the children emerged again.
The lawyer of the children and the House of representatives are very happy with the news. The decision of the State Secretary can count on approval for almost the entire council.
Dutch politician Alexander Pechtold shared his opinion on Twitter to his followers: ‘’The wellbeing of the children was in danger today, wellbeing is the most important thing.’’