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MOSCOW: Russian children whose adoptions have already been approved by courts will go to the United States despite a blanket ban on all American adoptions, a Kremlin spokesman said yesterday.
“Those who have received a court decision will go,” President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. “Those who do not have a decision will not go.”
He declined details, but Russian officials say 52 children were in the process of being adopted by US parents when the controversial ban on US adoptions came into force on January 1. Russia adopted the law in reprisal for new US legislation that targets Russian officials who have allegedly committed rights abuses.
Kremlin children’s rights envoy Pavel Astakhov said, citing a preliminary figure, that 52 children were at various stages of being adopted by Americans and that he had requested firm data from the education ministry.
“Currently no-one can tell for sure — these are children from Kamchatka to Kaliningrad,” he said, referring to Russia’s western and eastern borders. Ekho of Moscow radio, citing the education and science ministry, said that as of late December the ministry’s lists contained 52 children in the process of being adopted by US parents and who have already received a court decision. Those decisions have not entered force yet, the radio station added.
Kremlin spokesman Peskov said on Thursday that a November 1 international agreement between the US and Russia aiming to give better protection to adopted children would remain in force until January next year. AFP