Liam and Mia are missing from Abbotsford after having been taken to Lebanon by their father.

Abbotsford mom is fighting to get kids back from Lebanon

Ex-husband fails to return children, ages 7 and 9, after spring break

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help an Abbotsford mom fight to bring her children back home after her ex-husband took them to Lebanon, where he is from.

The page, posted today, indicates that the children – Mia, 9, and Liam, 7 – were expected to go on a spring break vacation to Seattle with their dad, Wissam Tarabichi, who had also been living in Abbotsford.

Their mom, Shelley, and stepdad, Dean, believed that Tarabichi would return the kids to school on April 3, as he had been authorized by the courts to do.

But Shelley received a call that day, saying the kids had not shown up in class.

She quickly learned that Tarabichi had sold his house in Abbotsford and all its contents, and severed all ties with Canada.

Shelley further discovered that Mia, Liam and Tarabichi had crossed the border from Abbotsford to Washington on March 24. The following day they flew from Seattle to Paris and then to Beirut.

Their exact location in Lebanon is not currently known.

Shelley and Dean have had no contact with the kids for two weeks, and Abbotsford is the only home they have known, the GoFundMe page indicates.

Because Lebanon is not a signatory of the Hague Convention, it is not required to co-operate with the return of the children to Canada.

The family has been advised to retain a lawyer in Lebanon, but they have already spent thousands of dollars in court fighting to “protect their children’s safety,” the GoFundMe page states.

“However, the Canadian court system permitted the children to travel abroad with their father; the airline somehow let them board the plane; and now, Liam and Mia are stuck.”

Funds raised by the campaign will be used for Shelley and Dean for lawyers and resources “to open up communications with (Tarabichi) and begin the process of resolution.”

“There is a long, frustrating, emotional and expensive road ahead of them,” the page states.

The campaign can be accessed on gofundme.com by searching “Help Bring Mia & Liam Home.”

Just Posted

Nominations open for UFV Betty Urquhart Community Service award

Award recognizes those who make community a better place to live

Fraser Health to buy two private MRI clinics in Surrey, Abbotsford

New clinics will provide 2,000 more MRIs by fiscal year-end

Abbotsford’s Batra disqualified after late attack

Austin Batra loses title after knocking opponent out in 32 seconds

Nominees announced for annual Arty Awards

Event takes place Sept. 29 at The Reach in Abbotsford

Family, friends of Mission murder victim hold protest rally

Group wants convicted murderer Walter Ramsay sent back to a maximum security facility

VIDEO & SLIDESHOW: Snowbird RV Show

Highlights from the Abbotsford event

Vancouver, Delta police won’t use new roadside saliva test to detect pot

The Dräger DrugTest 5000 is designed to find THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana

Canada aiming for the moon, and beyond, with new space technology efforts

With an eye on future lunar exploration, Canada’s space agency is calling on companies to present their ideas for everything from moon-rover power systems to innovative mineral prospecting techniques.

New Brunswick Premier meets with lieutenant-governor as Tories, Liberals vie for power

New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant said the only other leader he had spoken with since results came in was Green Leader David Coon.

Trudeau looks to restart Canada’s UN charm offensive in New York City

Freeland says the question of job retraining in the 21st century — and the uncertainty that surrounds it — is the federal government’s central preoccupation.

Calgary mayor seeks person who leaked details of closed-door Olympic meeting

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi says he will ask the city’s integrity commissioner to investigate a leak of details from an in-camera council meeting.

South Surrey boy, 10, to help kids in need

Ronin Bulmer, 10, is going door-to-door asking for donations

B.C. MP Cannings spared brunt of Ottawa tornadoes

MP Richard Cannings was spared the impact of the tornadoes that hit the Ottawa region

Edmonton cannabis company revenues more than triples to $19.1 million

Aurora Cannabis revenues more than triple in fourth quarter

Most Read