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Jade Quirke
Jade Quirke
Family Solicitor
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ABDUCTION: M v M [2007] EWHC 1820
Date:26 JUL 2007

(Family Division; Roderic Wood J; 26 July 2007)

The court rejected the mother's defence of grave risk in response to the father's application for summary return of the children to Zimbabwe. Although the overall picture was that there were risks to certain groups in certain parts of the country, there was no suggestion that Zimbabwe had been reduced to a state of civil war or anything like it, nor that there were grave risks to any person, citizen or visitor, to Zimbabwe if basic safety precautions were taken. The judge rejected the notion of the 'failed state' and any risks particular or general to the two children. The children had been born and raised in Zimbabwe, neither they nor their mother had any lawful right to remain in the UK and, although settlement had been established, the judge exercised his discretion for an immediate return.