Board joins custody battle


A Board of Deputies delegation visited the Austrian embassy this week to voice concern over a Viennese court’s decision to deny a British mother custody of her children.

Beth Alexander has been waging a legal battle with her Austrian ex-husband over the future of their four-year-old twin boys.

Last month, a judge ruled that the children should remain with their father, despite acknowledging that a previous judgment — denying custody because Ms Alexander suffered from mental illness — was wrong.

Board vice president Jonathan Arkush said that he and his colleagues were so “troubled by what we read in the judgments” that they took the “exceptional step of going to the ambassador”.

He added: “Having studied the court’s judgment carefully, I fear a serious miscarriage of justice has occurred and that the decision is a stain on the reputation of Austria.”

The ambassador Dr Emil Brix told the delegation he would relay their concerns to his government.

Ms Alexander is waiting for a final ruling from the Austrian Supreme Court. If unsuccessful, she says she will take the case to the European Court of Human Rights.

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