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(Family Division; Sir Mark Potter P; 8 June 2007)
Despite the clarity of the child's objections and the consideration to which such objections were entitled, and despite the fact that it might well be that ordinary welfare considerations militated in favour of the child being permitted to stay with the father in England, this was a case in which the court should exercise its discretion to order the child's return to Ireland, in order to enable the Irish court to examine and deal with the welfare issues in accordance with the plain intention of the Hague Convention, as reinforced by Brussels II Revised. The English court had contacted the Irish judge who was already acquainted with the child's case and the Irish judge had expressed willingness to list the case for expeditious directions with the view to a holding of a welfare hearing before him. Remarks by the mother in the heat of argument to the effect that the child should go to live with the father were expressions of upset and anger made in haste and distress which were never intended by the mother, nor truly understood by the child, as permission or consent to such a move.
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