Photo of Charlie Gard clutching his passport emerges ahead of life support decision
Charlie Gard’s parents are fighting to take him to the US for a therapy trial (Picture: FeatureWorld)

The parents of Charlie Gard have shared a heartbreaking photo of their terminally ill son clutching his passport as they wait for judges to decide whether to extend his life support.

Chris Gard and Connie Yates, from west London, want 10-month-old Charlie to take part in a therapy trial in the United States.

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Mr Gard posted the moving image of his son holding his passport, which is open on the page featuring a visa for entry to the US.

Judges at the European Court of Human Rights previously said Charlie, who has a rare genetic condition and brain damage, should be kept on life support until midnight tonight.

The decision was made to give lawyers representing Mr Gard and Ms Yates enough time to submit their arguments.

Photo of Charlie Gard clutching his passport emerges ahead of life support decision
European judges ruled he must be kept on life support until midnight tonight (Picture: Featureworld)

The couple took the case to the European Court of Human Rights, in Strasbourg, after losing battles in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, they say Charlie, who was born healthy, is responsive and getting stronger.

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But specialists at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London have argued keeping him alive is ‘unethical’ – while treatment in the US would be experimental and will not help.

Katie Gollop QC, head of Great Ormond Street’s legal team, told three Supreme Court justices in London that doctors believe palliative care is the best option for Charlie.

But she added his parents’ lawyers have threatened to complain to the Crown Prosecution Service if life support is withdrawn.

Photo of Charlie Gard clutching his passport emerges ahead of life support decision
Doctors argue that palliative care is Charlie’s best option (Picture: Family handout/PA Wire)

The couple want to take Charlie to the US for a treatment which has never been tried on humans before.

Well-wishers have already donated £1.3million to fund the trip.

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