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Russia-US agreement annulled

1 January, 08:36

Russian-US agreement on cooperation over issue of children adoption annulled

An agreement between Russia and the US on cooperation over the issue of adopted children is officially put out of action since January 1. The agreement was signed in July 2011 after several cases when adopted Russian children have been mistreated or even killed by their American adoptive parents. The situation has remained practically unchanged since then.

Cases of Russian children being mistreated by American adoptive parents are still frequent. Quite often, the offenders remain unpunished by American courts. One year ago, a so-called Dima Yakovlev law was adopted in Russia. This law totally bans US citizens from adopting Russian children. Immediately after the Dima Yakovlev law was adopted, Russia warned the US that it was going to annul the agreement between the two countries on cooperation over the issue of children adoption.

Russia's MP Alexei Pushkov of the Duma’s foreign affairs committee has suggested that the US has been forced to take notice of abuse and other acts of violence that have been perpetrated against Russian orphans on its soil only after Moscow passed the so-called "Dima Yakovlev" law, Voice of Russia’s correspondent Ksenia Melnikova says.

The legislation was named after Dima, a Russian-born toddler, who was left by his US foster parents in a hot car in the summer months and died of overheating. "The law laid bare a very serious problem, which was a lack of concern that US authorities had about the lives of Russian children in the US. Only after the adoption of this law did the US Secretary of State raise the issue in the Department and tasked it with collecting and sharing of information," Pushkov underscored. The MP said that at the end of the day the law was clearly worth the effort, despite a barrage of criticism in Western media that followed its endorsement in January 2013. "Before the Dima Yakovlev law, our requests [for information] were waved off as optional," the lawmaker said. Voice of Russia, TASS

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