Baby Charlie Gard's parents Connie Yates and Chris Gard have withdrawn their application to take their son to the US for medical treatment. The couple's lawyer Grant Armstrong told the High Court that "time had run out" for the 11-month-old, signalling the end of Connie and Chris' legal fight against Great Ormond Street Hospital, where Charlie is currently being treated.
A statement from the couple said that "it is no longer in Charlie's best interests to pursue this course of treatment" and that "the window of opportunity has been lost". They made the decision after US doctor Dr Michio Hirano said it was too late to give Charlie nucleoside therapy after seeing the results of a new MRI scan last week. Mr Armstrong continued to say that the parents' "worst nightmare have been confirmed" and that Connie and Chris would look to establish a foundation so that their son's voice could still be heard.
Charlie's parents have ended their legal fight
The terminally ill baby suffers from brain damage and mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a rare genetic disease thought to affect only 16 children in the world. Charlie is being kept on life support at the children's hospital in central London. His parents were hoping to bring Charlie to the US for therapy treatment, and last week he was reportedly granted US citizenship by the Senate, so that he could travel to America to receive treatment. Chris and Connie had raised £1.3m via donations to fly their son to the US.
Doctors have argued that further medication would not cure Charlie, and that it would be kinder to let him pass away. But his parents have fought a lengthy legal battle in the High Court and Court of Appeal and Supreme Court in London. Speaking on Good Morning Britain about her son, Connie previously said: "Charlie is not suffering. All we want is two to three months to know if it works. There is potential for him to be a completely normal boy, but we don't know – because you don't know until you try.
"There is new information. There's further scientific research that this medication would work for Charlie. From the doctors, from the team of doctors who agree on this medication. There are now five doctors who agree with us, two of them are in England, one is in Spain, one is in Italy and one is in America."