Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau has stated that he has requested that the United Kingdom grant diplomatic status to a Polish citizen who is in a Plymouth hospital suffering from brain damage, which will enable Polish consul to visit him.
The Polish citizen, who has lived in Britain for over a decade, suffered from cardiac arrest, leading his heart to stop for 45 minutes. As a result, he suffered brain damage which has led British doctors to recommend that life support be turned off.
That recommendation has been approved by the British courts and the man’s wife and children, but has been contested by the man’s mother and sisters. The mother and sisters are fighting to ensure life support remains, and if necessary, for their relative to be transported to Poland. The Polish government has indicated that it is willing to transport and receive the patient for care.
Rau has announced on social media that his ministry is attempting to obtain diplomatic status for the man in hospital. A British court has so far refused either a visit from the Polish consul and the request to transport the patient to Poland.
The court has ruled that transport of the patient risks his death and could result in further suffering.
The Polish diplomatic services have been actively trying to persuade the British authorities to allow them to intervene on behalf of their citizen. The matter is sensitive as the wife and children believe that the man would not want to live in his current state, whereas the mother and sisters argue that the man is a practicing Catholic who believes in the sanctity of life.
The members of the family who are fighting for his life to be preserved argue that his state has improved since the first court ruling and that he is now breathing without support and is responding by blinking his eyes.
The dispute is therefore centered on whether feeding and hydrating the patient should be continued and whether he should be transported to Poland, which his wife refuses to consent to.
The Polish foreign affairs ministry has submitted three petitions on behalf of the man’s family to the European Human Rights Tribunal and Polish Speaker of Parliament Elżbieta Witek has written to the British speaker of the House of Commons in support of the man’s return to Poland. On Monday, a key aide of President Andrzej Duda, Krzysztof Szczerski, met the British ambassador to Poland Anna Clunes over the issue.