Russia's Sergei Lavrov

Lavrov Defends Russian Ban On U.S. Adoptions

(RFE/RL) — Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has defended recently adopted legislation that bars U.S. citizens from adopting Russian children.

In an interview aired in the Russian Far East, Lavrov said the law was a response to “numerous” reports of Russian adoptees being killed or abused.

“The United States is the only country from which we receive genuinely alarming reports about how many families treat our children,” Lavrov said. “And I use the word ‘many’ intentionally.”

He said the number of cases of abuse is much greater than believed because adoptive parents change their children’s Russian names, making it impossible for Moscow to track them.

He also said Russia “had to” pass the adoption ban in response to a U.S. law imposing sanctions on Russian officials tied to human rights abuses, a measure known as the Magnitsky Act after a whistle-blowing lawyer named Sergei Magnitsky who died in pretrial custody in a Moscow jail in 2009.

RFE/RL journalists report the news in 21 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established.

One thought on “Lavrov Defends Russian Ban On U.S. Adoptions”

  1. Americans aren’t entitled to adopt Russian kids – it is a privilege that Russia can revoke at any time for any (or no or a petty, political) reason. The mistreaent of Russian-born kids by their American adoptive parents is NOT petty or political reason.

    The vast majority of USA adoptive parents provide loving homes for their Russian-born kids — but the “only” 19 dead Russian kids, 400+ missing Russian kids and cases of horrific but non-lethal abuse (Masha Allen, Ksenia Anatova certainly suggests there is room for improvement in how pre-adoptive American parents are screened.

    Russia has made great strides in improving its child welfare system – domestic adoptions are up, the number of kids in orphanages is down, more foster homes, family reunification efforts, etc which is wonderful! Russia has made great strides and caring for its own children — international adoption should be a last resort!

    (To the folks who say Russia’s improvements are too slow – remember that the same can be said for the ongoing reforms of the USA foster care system, and nobody suggests we let foreigners adopt our foster kids. Also go google the life outcomes of aged-out Russian orphans and aged out USA foster kids. They’re equally grim. Perhaps we are not in the best of all possible positions to tell Russia what to do in this area!).

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