but will continue here: Romania for Export Only BLOG

President Basescu at the European Commission, 22 April 2010

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.

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