Five years later: Mother of abducted Insiya Hemani releases new appeal
Wednesday marks the fifth anniversary of the violent abduction of Insiya Hemani from her grandmother's apartment in Amsterdam. The girl was two years old at the time. Her mother, Nadia Rashid, is still fighting to bring her daughter home and released a new video appeal to mark the anniversary.
Insiya was forcibly taken from her grandmother's home on 29 September 2016 by a group of men. The abduction was orchestrated by her father, Shehzad Hemani, who took the little girl to India. As far as is known, she is still there today despite multiple court rulings ordering Hemani to return Insiya to her mother.
Last year, a Dutch court convicted Hemani of his daughter's abduction and sentenced him to nine years in prison. His cousin, Imran S. was also convicted for his role in the abduction and sentenced to four years behind bars. Both men were tried, convicted and sentenced in absentia. Another six people were previously convicted for involvement in the kidnapping and sentenced to up to four years in prison.
"You just witnessed in one minute how Insiya's human rights are violated for the past five years," organization Bring Insiya Back said in the video released on the anniversary of her abduction. "The violent kidnapping and years of hostage-taking of Insiya needs more than only public outrage. Insiya needs restoration of her human rights."
The young Amsterdam girl is a Dutch citizen, and her mother says Insiya is being held illegally in India. Her father has refused to bring the child back to the Netherlands despite Dutch court rulings ordering him to do so.
An international arrest warrant was issued against Shehzad Hemani but he has not been taken into custody in India, or elsewhere. It is not clear if the Indian government would comply with a request from Dutch prosecutors to capture him and extradite him to the Netherlands.