but will continue here: Romania for Export Only BLOG

President Basescu at the European Commission, 22 April 2010

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Help Nagarani and other parents of missing children

Today the Sunday Times reported on the work of ACT (Against Child Trafficking), being to assist parents of missing children. Children missing because they were adopted by foreigners, in exchange for money.

Some of these children were kidnapped directly from their parents. Nagarani's son, for example, was kidnapped during the night - just as Madeleine McCann.

Madeleine McCann fund raised £2 million in first 10 months.

ACT is in need of urgent funding. To bring Nagarani and her husband to The Netherlands. But also to assist many more parents in similar situations.

I hope we can show that the world cares about all children and all parents!


In 1999, the 18 month old son of Nagarani and her husband Kathirvel was kidnapped in India and sold by to the orphanage Malaysian Social Services.

In 2007, through the work of ACT, Nagarani’s child was located in the Netherlands. The Dutch adoptive family refuses any contact, or DNA testing. The adoption agency and the Dutch Ministry of Justice take no responsibility.

ACT helped Nagarani and Kathirvel to get a lawyer in the Netherlands, so that they could request visiting rights in the Dutch Court of Justice.
See also: A Chennai slum dweller's fight for her Dutch son



Via Paypal - see button on top of this posting, or

Against Child Trafficking,
The Netherlands, Nijmegen

Bank account: 67 26 82 060

IBAN: NL41 INGB 0672 6820 60

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Ethiopia: Export Commodity Child

Informal translation of summary: Sonntaz Exportgut Kind

FULL ARTICLE (not yet online)

HOPE This Ethiopian Family has given a son to Germany. The father hoped that it would be better off there. That’s why he lied. Adoption agencies and orphanages claim such lies – at the intercountry adoption market.


Export commodity child
A family in Ethiopia has many children and no money to feed them. A German family has money and wants a child. Human rights activists criticize the business of hope.

Human rights activists warn that the placement of orphans turned into a business.

Photo: jenzig71/photocase

AUGSBURG / SHINSHIZO taz | The number of children who are adopted abroad from Ethiopia has risen significantly in recent years. At least 3,000 children have been mediated in 2008 to countries like the USA, France or Spain. This is shown by an internal document from the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa, which Sonntaz has. While German families in 2007 took 29 boys and girls from there, in 2008, according to the Federal Statistical Office it were already 47. From no other African country, more children come up for adoption to Germany.

Human rights activists warn that the placement of orphans becomes a business. They also criticize the role of adoption agencies that act as an intermediaries. "The high prices charged by the agencies for adoption are often not justified by actual costs. Foreign adoptions have thus become a market, "Brigitte Siebert of the central authority for international adoptions in the Hamburg told Sonntaz. In 2008 alone, worldwide around 37 million € circulated with adoptions from Ethiopia.

"Whenever the placement of children money flows and the players earn from it, it is sale of children," says the Dutch Roelie Post. She has for the EU Commission fought for years against the corruption and fraud in the adoption of children from Romania. Since the adoptions from there have completely stopped, she fears, countries such as Ethiopia could take the role of Romania. With her organisation Against Child Trafficking she tries to stop this.

In Ethiopia, acted in 2008, according to the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa, 69 state-licensed adoption agencies. They bring children from orphanages first to transitional homes, to prepare them for their new life in the West, and finally to the countries of their new families. Potential parents want most healthy, most young sons or daughters. In Ethiopia, according to Unicef, live about 5 million orphans, but often these are ill, disabled or older. Due to the mismatch of supply and demand, it always comes back to fraud.

Also Abadi Kebede (name changed) from a south Ethiopian village made false statements, when he gave his son to Germany. The Sonntaz tells tells the whole story as Edo (name changed), aged three years, came to Germany. "The Lost Son," describes this road via an Ethiopian orphanage to a southern German family and paints how in the market for adoptions in the meantime also a librarian hoped Edo could become her child. The Sonntaz describes how an adoption agency through Kebede’s lie got into distress. And how to German authorities react to that.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

France: Over 80 adopted children abandoned each year

Unofficial translation - via Fabriquée en Corée

France: Over 80 adopted children abandoned each year

Published in France-Soir, Nicole Korchia, May 3, 2010.

The figures are secret and taboo in France: officially 2% of adoptions are doomed to fail in France. But unofficially, the specialists speak bluntly of one out of ten ... Our investigation.

A terrible fact ...
The failures of the adoption, is not much spoken about. Yet even in France, heart-rending stories of adopted children handed to institutions, then returned to their countries are frequent and real. Taboo, controversial, no official statistics are given. The issue of adoption is too sensitive and the finding of failure are buried under the hundreds of pending requests. If figures of 2 and 3% failure are circulating, that is already huge, because it means that from about 4,000 children adopted each year, more than 80 are abandoned each year, returned as a simple device that does not work! What happens with these little ones, dismissed again and again, by their biological families and then the adoptive families? How will they rebuild? And why is that after so many stages and waiting, adoptive parents are unable to keep this child so much dreamed of?

Why these failures?
"In the context of adoption, explains us at the AFA (French Adoption Agency), there is very often the child dreamed of and the real child. And the two do not always converge. Adoption is truly a graft which takes or does not. Indeed parents often go far beyond their original plan, thinking they can take an older child with a past emotional or physical problem or pathological ... But over the months, things get complicated ... Dr. Geneviève André-Trevennec, director of Médecins du Monde, said: "We must make parents aware of the responsibility they had in their adoption process. They committed themselves, it's like when you have a biological child who was born with difficulties, we assume and we love him until the end, whatever happens."

What happens to these rejected children? When full adoption is recognized, the child remains legally forever bound to his parents. He is placed by the social services, but he will never be adoptable in full. When he is foreign and his country has made a legal decision, his country no longer wants him. And if not yet registered with the French registry, he finds himself a bit stateless. This happens especially when individual adoptions.

To avoid this, the psychological preparation for parenthood and monitoring of adoptive families are gradually established by adoption agencies. "With the current trend of international adoption that offers more and more older children from complex situations, it becomes vital. Otherwise the failures will multiply! A supported and warned family reacts so not to come to extreme situations," confirms André Genevieve Trevennec. But it is still insufficient and many signs of alarms go unnoticed. However, a failure to adopt never happens overnight. So many lives shattered in the first years of existence can not leave us indifferent ...

"More than 30% of approvals granted should be denied"
Dr. Pierre Levy-Soussan is a child psychiatrist, medical director Consulting affiliations in Paris. France-Soir. What is a real failure of the adoption?
Pierre Levy-Soussan. The most serious are those that result in abuse, neglect and with delivery of the child to the ASE (Child Welfare). They go well beyond the announced 2%. Then there are the equivalent of stalemate where the situation has degenerated to such an extent that parents or children have nothing together except indifference or hatred. The professionals assess globally these stalemates at 10 or 15%. And that’s huge ...

F.-S. What should be done to prevent such tragedies?
P. L.-S. Being more selective about the licensing and stop the amateurism institutionalized in adoption. A case dismissed by the commission can be saved by a president of the general council or a judge. Amateurism! Anybody can get a license. The refusal rate nationwide is 10%, with 70% of departments between 0 and 10%! More than 30% should be rejected because the areas that work best have a refusal rate between 30 and 40%. No politician wants to challenge the law and children are paying the price!

F.-S. How to do this concretely?
P. L.-S. Under the assumption of an efficient selection of candidates, by doing the work of matching of families: that child for that parent, as any child can not go with any parent. We must stop relying on the random arrival of files as does the AFA.

F.-S. Do we paint a too rosy image of adopiton compared to its reality?

P. L.-S. Of course, and peopolisation contributes to that, adoption has a picture of a fairy tale. The realities and difficulties are put aside and it that does not help prospective adoptive parents who are often overwhelmed by the obstacles they encounter.

F.-S. A story like the little Russian boy could have happened here?
P. L.-S. Not only it could have, but it happens in France. Children who are returned with their bags to the ASE that is unfortunately not an exception ...

A serious act that justice sanctions
On March 29, 2010, the Criminal Court of Nantes sentenced adoptive parents to nine months suspended sentence for abandoning in 2004 their two Ethiopian children. Adopted four years before, they were delivered to ESA some time after the birth biological child of the couple in question. They were "violent and difficult," explained the adoptive parents who paid 400 euros per month social services for custody, but no longer exercised their visiting rights.

Second story: that of a couple who had adopted a Chinese child first and then a second, who around 3 years had shown a medical condition. When the parents heard the diagnosis, they left the child to the hospital and went to report the abandonment to the ESA. Obviously, this has destabilized the elder child, who thought that if she fell ill, her parents would abandon her. The second child was immediately placed in a remarkable family, who accompanied her on her treatment and was then adopted. It is an unfortunate story that did not end too badly ....

Third case: that of a child born in Eastern Europe. It was well adapted, but the family made him their property, totally isolated from the world. Outside school, he saw no one other than his two parents. One educator charged with his follow up, reported these facts to the judiciary, because the parents refused to get help. Result, the child was placed in provisional detention. Finally, more recently, a mother went to pick up a child in Haiti after the earthquake of January 12, but she could not assume that adoption and gave it back to social services last month. The little girl is now at the DDASS (Child Protection) in the Reunion, abandoned after less than three months in a new family...

Friday, 30 April 2010

Why Russia should stop exporting its children

Amidst the pressure to re-open Romanian adoption, I of course followed the situation of Artyom Savelyev, the Russian adoptee who was ‘returned to sender’ by his US adoptive mother. This case has brought the controversial issue of intercountry adoption from Russia back into the international news. The possibility that Russia might stop exporting children has spread panic in the adoption industry.

Intercountry adoption is in crisis. Over the last five years the number of children adopted from one country to another has halved. Many countries have closed their doors to this unaccountable industry. So, the adoption industry, driven by private adoption agencies, is facing difficult times. They have taken large sums of money from people who want to adopt, but they can no longer supply the children to satisfy the outstanding demand.

Russia is now the third largest “sending” country from where the US adopts children, after China and Ethiopia. These three countries are all confronted by a growing number of legal scandals which show that international adoption agencies routinely trample local laws in their search for adoptable children (a typical legal scam involves the falsely declaring of the child as an orphan or abandoned, thus clearing the way for international adoption). And yet these countries continue to export their children.

Having been involved in the Romanian child protection reform, on behalf of the European Commission, I have had the privilege of an insider’s look into the adoption “kitchen”, where the most common ingredients are political pressure and emotional blackmail. A nexus of adoption agencies, adoptive parents and politicians are using their powers to ensure that intercountry adoptions continue. Often they are successful. However, in Romania they were not. Successive Romanian governments, with support of the European Union, stood firm and took the decision to stop the export of their children -- a decision the adoption industry has continued to aggressively challenge for the last 5 years.

A main player in the adoption industry is the Joint Council on International Children’s Service, a US umbrella organisation of private adoption agencies. They are at the heart of a vicious lobby to make intercountry adoption a worldwide accepted practice. A recent leaked document showed that this organisation is suffering from a negative image, seen as a trade organisation, and is in financial difficulties. If things are not turned around somehow, they may have to close down this year. The closure of Russia could well be the last nail in their coffin.

It is therefore no surprise that the Joint Council has started an aggressive campaign to “keep Russia open” - titled WE ARE THE TRUTH. On the internet they are mobilising adoptive parents to sign a letter to President Medvedev and President Obama, to involve their Senators and to swamp the internet with positive adoption stories.

In these hot waters, the US State Department is now lobbying in Moscow, to push for Russia to “better regulate” adoptions, and to sign the Hague Convention. This Convention has been proven to be about consumer protection, not about protecting the rights of the child. It creates a legal trade in children and protects the interests of the adoptive parents – and even more the adoption agencies, not the children. It further has the perverse effect of making local child protection become dependent of the donations of foreign adoption agencies. This dependency results in a continuous flow of adoptable children. Children are taken out of the children’s homes for intercountry adoption, but new children are taken in. Children who could with little support, often remain with their families. Again, it is the demand that creates the supply.

Once children are adopted abroad, Russia can follow up on their well being only by requesting post adoption reports. Just some week ago the Russian Ministry of Education posted a long list of foreign adoption agencies that had not send in these post adoption reports. However, one has to understand that the post adoption reports are being provided by those involved in the adoption industry. There is sufficient evidence that such post adoption reports may paint a much rosier situation than the reality. After all, for Artyom Savelyev Russia received a positive post adoption report, just weeks before this boy was brutally send back. Also for Masha Allen, adopted at the age of five to the US for sexual slavery and internet pornography. To think a bilateral agreement will solve this is just wishful thinking.

Intercountry adoption is an industry in crisis. An industry that functions by the economic rules of supply and demand, which is now suffering due to a lack of supply. Not many countries still export their children.

It is up to Russia to decide the fate of its children.

"A country which is unable to care for her children is a country with no future and therefore I believe there should be no additional pressures to liberalise procedures for international adoption in Romania, meaning adoption of Romanian children by people of other nationalities with domicile abroad"
Sabin Cutas, Member of the European Parliament (Romania)


Thursday, 22 April 2010

Romanian President: Country’s Adoption Law Will Not Change During My Term

Romanian President Traian Basescu said Thursday in Brussels that the country’s law on adoptions will not change, “at least” not during his term, regardless of the lobby in favor of change made “in Brussels and elsewhere.”

A petition for the reopening of international adoptions in Romania was dismissed on March 23 on the request of Romanian MEP Victor Bostinaru, unanimously backed by the European Parliament's Petition Committee.

Bostinaru argued at the time that, before accession, the European Union itself requested that Romania ban international adoptions and the move was welcomed by the European Parliament and European Commission. He added that any attempt to put this topic back on the agenda of EU institutions, or to pressure Romania must be speedily and firmly rebutted.


See also the previous posting:

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Haiti puts a halt to new adoptions.

In the midst of adoptions? That's rather vague. Finalised adoptions, Court Decision. That would be clearer:

Lassegue told the German Press Agency dpa that the government has put a halt to new adoptions. Only those children who were already in the midst of adoptions would be allowed to leave. There have been increasing reports from the UN and elsewhere over trafficking in the disaster's smallest victims, who have been found wandering on their own through the country.

Full article HERE

Saturday, 16 January 2010

The Dutch Airlifting Haiti's children

Instead of airlifting the 56 Haitian children out of the country, it would be advisable to find back their parents and to help them reunite if that's what they want. That would be a true humanitarian act - and a great blessing in these tragic days.

Because, in many cases the children have parents who with a little bit of help will be able to care for their children themselves. And not always they understand that their children are handed over forever.

Read the below translation

Original text: Haïti : quand adoption rime avec transaction

Haiti: when adopting rhymes with transaction

(Syfia / Haiti). Haiti is one of the main "suppliers" of adoptable children. A quasi-commercial sector has settled, based on the law of the market rather than on a logic of child welfare. Many adopted children still have their parents ...

On the tarmac of the overheated Toussaint Louverture Airport in Port-au-Prince, not a day goes by without a child in Haiti embarks an international flight, accompanied by his adoptive parents or representative of an adoption agency. Many go to Europe: Haiti has indeed become a major "supplier" of adoptable children: the first for France, one of the main for Belgium and Switzerland. More than 400 young Haitians are adopted each year in France and fifty in Belgium. In this country, their number is declining, "Especially after a campaign denouncing the bad adoption practices in Haiti, "said Gerrit De Sloover, vice-Honorary Consul of Belgium in Haiti, a consultant on issues international adoption.

From 300 to 400 in the 1990s, the number of international adoption files of Haitian children filed per year in Port-au-Prince, Institute of Social Welfare and Research (IBESR) is now between 1 000 and 1 500. Exactly 1 367 for the period October 2007 to October 2008. This increase results from the fact that Haiti is one of the rare countries not to have ratified the 1993 Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in international adoption, which sets a clear ethical framework and establishes the principle that a child is adoptable when no family can host it in the country.


Often driven by a genuine desire for a child on the side of parents, international adoption appears in the field to be a real business. In 2005, the procedure could cost the adoptive between 5 000 and 6 500 $ U.S. on average, according to UNICEF, including attorneys' fees incurred by nurseries and those proceedings. Today, we approach the $ 10,000 U.S.. The offer has always existed on the Haitian side, shows Sloover De Geer, but demand has increased recently. Children's homes have therefore multiplied in the country. In 2008, 66 nurseries were accredited by the IBESR (against 47 in 2005), mostly in Port-au-Prince. But their control by the institute is problematic, given the lack of resources of the institution and lack of will on their part. According to the Deputy Director of IBESR himself, Mr. Casseus, nurseries would be much more numerous than those accredited by the Institute, "almost two hundred, 'he says, without seeming very certain. According to UNICEF, "international adoption through private organizations who have not received permission is unfortunately possible. "I know of cases where not recognized nurseries subcontract to accredited creches, "said Gerrit De Sloover. Because "sometimes, some have not enough children 'in stock' explains X. V., Director for ten years of a nursery in Port-au-Prince. They will therefore look elsewhere "to meet the desires of adoptive parents. "I received many emails from parents, always the same: ''We have the authority to adopt, we seek a child, a daughter,'' 'she says.

Purely formal control

The little ones who have "defects" are not very popular: older or sick children have little chance of being adopted and some nurseries who focus solely on international adoption do not accept them. Moreover, the majority of children adopted from Haiti have always an alive parent, either both, either one of them, an aunt, a grand mother ... from which they are literally "bought" to be entrusted to adopters. "It seems that some nurseries give money to the family, "says Mr. Casseus. The most common is that people related to the nursery actively seek poor mothers and their offer to their young children for adoption. "Once the papers signed, they will explain them what adoption is. It is not illegal, but illegitimate and abusive, "said Gerrit De Sloover, although he considers that these cases are less numerous than in India.
Sometimes the initiative comes from parents. There was much talk of sale of children in Haiti. The case of a mother who sold both her children for his 500 gourds (10 €) made noise. "The parents, unable to care for their children, place them, "said X. V. The absence of social security, of guarantees for old age, and high Infant mortality rates are pushing parents to have many children in the hope that some will take care of them later. To the deputy director of the IBESR, many parents are aware what they do when they place their child in a nursery, and and sooth themselves with the illusion by thinking that someday they will make them travel ... The Haitian law, in fact, does not recognize itself plenary adoption that involves breaking ties of biological filiation. It thus comes into conflict with many Foreign laws. In giving their consent, many parents are not well informed, and more, a majority sign documents they can not read.

Limiting individual adoption ...

According to Haitian law currently IBESR has no obligation to check the veracity of the families' consent before an adoption decision is taken to court. Only the presence in the records of administrative and legal paperwork holds, the same goes for the consulates also involved before departure. "It's a purely administrative work at the end of the process, "said Gerrit of Sloover. "For years, the criteria were not applied. Today, the procedure is fairly slow, because they tend to be more strictly. They started asking for more papers for the adoption, which has primarily been a source of more corruption, " said X. V. From six months to a year ago, the time may now be two and a half years. "Much is left to personal interpretation of judges and officials in the management of cases, said Gerrit De Sloover. The concept of 'easy case' is fairly elastic. X. V. sighs: "The nurseries suffered so much pressure ... If you did not pay, the case dragged on for months and months, and adoptive parents accuse you of not being as fast as other nurseries. No nursery responsible obviously will tell you he pays ... " The embassies also exert pressure on the Haitian authorities, not to increase the controls, but to expedite the process. A draft law was tabled in Parliament, but it is not likely to be adopted in the short term. However, the responsibility falls also on the adopting countries. Some, like France, accept steps taken by individual prospective parents, who turn directly to a Haitian nursery. 90% of the children "exported" from Haiti to Hexagon follow this path. Elsewhere, individual adoption is limited and parents are obliged to go through approved adoption agencies, where the procedure is known longer. "But what is needed is more control on the ground, "said another manager manger. The IBESR believes that also should "the consent procedure for parents Haitians needs to be strengthened so that they are well aware of the implications of the actions they take." But, paradoxically, the salary of the Institute staff is paid, in part, with revenues from adoption records filed: 5 000 gourds (100 €) per file. Even incomplete or problematic, many are accepted ...
Maude Malengrez

"We signed for 18 years"

Kettelie Wesh lives in Soleil 17, in Port-au-Prince. In 2005, violence corrodes the area. Kettelie heard of women in the neighborhood who had "placed" their child in kindergarten for international adoption. This is how she met le Blan (foreigner) she shows on a yellowing photograph with her daughter, Jenny. He is a pastor, supported by a network of Churches in the United States to manage a nursery in Hait oriented towards international adoption, but also helps some families care for their children. "If I could have, I would have put all my children.” In October 2005, she brought the youngest, Jenny, 4 years, most likely to be adopted because it is a girl, still small.
"Le Blanc told us that even if the child leaves, you remain the mom. That you will always be in communication with her, even if you can not see her and at 18 years, she would come back to meet you. He added that when Blans will take your child in Haiti, they have the courtesy to come and meet you to explain what will be the child's life. That you will always be have news about the child. "
In October 2007, Jenny moved to the United States. Kettelie received some photos. But since a year and a half, no news. The white Pastor left without that she knew and his former driver in turn took over the nursery. "When we come to ask about our children and we do a scene outside his door, he sends the police. I have already been arrested. "
The children adopted from Haiti, for the most part, have parents still life, but who can not raise them. These sign consent to adoption, often without being aware of what it implies. "We signed for 18 years, claims Lucienne Ophelia, whose daughter left for Germany at the age of 5 years. She stayed one year in the nursery. I went to see her from time to time. I received a picture the first six months after her departure. Then, nothing: neither photo nor news. She will be 16 years. "Lucienne awaits her return in two
years: "In my neighborhood, everyone says that I have sold my child." "We wanted to seek a better life for our child, but we never thought we were going to lose her, "testifies
Kettelie. And when, exceptionally, photographs arrive, nurseries change envelopes before giving them to parents, "so that no one finds a trace of the child "says Emilio Rafael with a faint voice, the father of two small children adopted to France in 2001 and he is without new since 2003.
Mr. M.

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