Friday, April 16, 2010

Russia halts international adoptions to US

As we've often seen in Korea, international adoption can be a touchy issue, fraught with emotion (though cooler heads ultimately prevail, usually). I can only imagine how badly this would have played out in the some parts of the South Korean media had this been a Korean adoptee instead of a Russian:
Russia has frozen all adoptions to the United States, the foreign ministry announced Thursday as national outrage simmered over a towheaded 7-year-old Russian orphan sent alone on a plane back to Moscow by his adoptive mother.

A U.S. delegation is due in Moscow in coming days to discuss the crisis with Russian officials. Russia is pressing the United States to sign an agreement that would more carefully screen would-be parents and monitor the families upon their return to the United States, foreign ministry officials have said.

"Russia believes that only an agreement which will contain effective tools for Russian and U.S. officials to monitor the living conditions of adopted Russian children will ensure that recent tragedies in the United States will not be repeated," foreign ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said at a briefing Thursday. ...

Ever since the child turned up waiflike in the Moscow airport with nothing to explain himself but a letter from his adoptive mother calling him "mentally unstable," anger has boiled in Russia.
Substitute Russia and Moscow for Korea and Seoul and I think we have our answer (and yes, I recognize the inherent unfairness of knocking Korea for something that is purely hypothetical and hasn't happened, but it's not like I'm always engaged in this kind of practice).

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