SA govt wants Karabus appeal dropped

2013-04-22 15:19

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The government has urged that the appeal, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), against the release of local doctor Prof Cyril Karabus be dropped at his next appearance.

“We are hopeful, therefore, that tomorrow’s (court) hearing (in the UAE) will not culminate in a further postponement,” Deputy International Relations Minister Marius Fransman told reporters today.

“It is now really time for the professor to be reunited with his family. The South African government trusts that justice will prevail...”

Speaking in Johannesburg, Fransman said Karabus would appear in court tomorrow for a second time in his appeal case.

The 78-year-old paediatric oncologist has been detained in the UAE since August 18, after being sentenced in absentia for the death of a Yemeni girl he treated for leukaemia in 2002.

He was acquitted on the charge on March 21, but was not allowed to leave the country as the prosecutor appealed the court decision.

The appeal would be heard in the Abu Dhabi court on Tuesday.

Fransman said he travelled to Abu Dhabi on March 3 and to Dubai on March 17 to engage with authorities on the case.

“As a democratic state, we do respect the sovereignty and the independence of the judicial system of the UAE,” Fransman said.

“We call on them to withdraw the appeal.”

He said Karabus was “strong” under the circumstances, but that this did not mean there were not difficulties with his health.

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