Dubai: A 13-year-old boy who called Dubai Police threatening to commit suicide because his mother abandoned him in their flat was counselled and moved to a shelter in Sharjah.

The terrified child informed the control room that his mother was travelling outside the country, leaving him in the flat in Al Qusais with just Dh5,000 and a fridge filled with food.

Brigadier Dr Mohammad Al Murr, director of the Human Rights Department at Dubai Police, said the officer who responded to the call tried to calm the boy down till his location was identified and a police patrol could reach him. “He was in a bad psychological condition,” he said.

A team from Dubai Police’s Women and Children Protection Department reached the flat and convinced the boy to open the door.

Lieutenant Colonel Saeed Rashid Al Heli, director of the Women and Children Protection Department, said: “He was crying and I spoke with him till he opened the door. He had cut his hand with a sharp tool and also damaged the furniture. He said his mother taught him how to cook and told him to call the police if he needed anything.”

Brig Al Murr added: “We calmed him down and provided first aid. He then told us that his mother had left him to travel outside the country just eight hours before he called 999.”

The mother, an Arab separated from her Emirati husband, was raising the boy after a court granted her custody. She had left for an European country.

“It is negligence. The mother told him she was travelling for treatment, but she wasn’t sick and was attending to a private matter,” Brig Al Murr said.

Lt Col Al Heli added: “She was fabricating stories to make the boy hate his father. She told him that his father used to beat him when he was younger and that he wasn’t spending any money on his education, but the truth is that the man was putting money in the mother’s account and wanted to look after his son, but she refused to let him.”

The boy initially refused to meet his father saying he would hurt him, but agreed to do so after counselling. The father requested the prosecution to transfer the boy’s custody to him.