The BBC reports that 11-month-old Charlie Gard’s parents, Connie Yates and Chris Gard, have decided to end the legal battle that has kept the boy connected to a breathing machine after doctors at the Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Gard was born with a rare genetic disorder known as mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome. Doctors have determined the baby cannot hear, see, move or breathe on his own and had decided to terminate life support against the parent’s wishes.
Charlie’s parents wished to take the boy from the hospital and to the United States for experimental treatments with money raised privately, but courts in the U.K. kept them from doing so.
The legal battle gained worldwide attention, sparking a debate over who has rights over children and who decides whether they live or die. The Vatican and the United States have both offered citizenship to Charlie and his parents.
An American doctor spent last week evaluating Charlie and his medical records. The fact that Charlie’s parents are ending their fight would indicate the doctor’s findings were not hopeful.
This story will be updated as further details are available.