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Kathleen Poole: Deportation Of Grandmother With Alzheimer’s Paused

April 6, 2023

    Sweden has “placed on hold” the deportation of a British grandmother with Alzheimer’s, her family have told the BBC.

    Kathleen Poole, 74, was told to leave the country after her application to remain post-Brexit was rejected.

    Her family have been told that Swedish authorities will continue to plan for the deportation, but have paused any order to carry it out for now.

    Mrs Poole’s daughter-in-law said: “I just want an end to this situation”.

    The British embassy in Stockholm informed Mrs Poole’s family on Wednesday that Swedish immigration authorities had received a request to stop the deportation at the end of March.

    Her removal has been placed on hold until a new decision is made, it said.

    “I actually don’t believe it for five minutes, even though they’ve paused it,” Angelica Poole told the BBC, calling for a permanent reversal of the decision.

    She said the situation was taking a toll on the family and they fear the deportation order could be revived.

    Grandmother-of-four Mrs Poole, who is from Macclesfield, Cheshire, applied for the right to remain in Sweden, where she movedalmosttwo decades ago to be near her only son and his children.

    But her application was turned down in September 2022, despite the fact she is bedbound, has spent the last 10 years in a care home, and has no family she is in contact with in the UK.

    The case has attracted significant media attention, and campaigners representing EU citizens living in the UK have expressed “grave concern”.

    MP Hilary Benn, former Brexit Select Committee chair, has urged the UK foreign secretary, James Cleverly, to intervene.

    Her family said Mrs Poole’s application was turned down because she does not have a valid UK passport, which they argue she has not required for some time as she is unable to travel due to her poor health.

    They have been offered support to make a new application for a passport by the Foreign Office, Mrs Poole’s family told the BBC, but fear power of attorney arrangements in the UK mean they will be unsuccessful.

    “I don’t know where to go from here,” her daughter-in-law said.

    “A lot of British people are actually being sent back to the UK, which is not ok but they’re healthy.

    “She can not do anything. She’s bedridden. That’s what makes me angry.

    “They’re moving a sick person and her health can deteriorate even more by moving her.”

    Her family said they have been left confused by the update and renewed their pleas for the situation to be resolved permanently.

    On Tuesday, Sweden’s Minister of Migration, Maria Malmer Stenergard, said in a statement: “Decisions related to residence applications are applied directly by the Swedish state agencies and courts in line with the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement.

    “As laid down in the constitution, the Swedish government is not permitted to interfere in or comment on individual decisions taken by these independent state bodies.

    “With regard to the case in question, I have been informed that the Swedish Migration Agency is in contact with the family concerning additional information.”

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