20 December 2012, 04:54

Astakhov urges ensuring future of Russia’s orphans

Astakhov urges ensuring future of Russia’s orphans

Children's Rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov has labeled as shameful the "export" of Russian orphans abroad.

Russia’s State Duma on Wednesday passed the amended Dima Yakovlev Bill, which will introduce a ban on adoptions of Russian children by U.S. citizens, and extend the measure to all countries that violate the rights of Russians.

"It is shameful to export children. Taking a decision to ban foreign adoption, we must acknowledge that it’s about time we stopped relying on foreigners to save our children. There should be a greater effort on the part of state and society to ensure Russian orphans a decent life and promising future,” Astakhov told journalists, commenting on the new law.

To achieve this, efforts should be channeled to support large families, special needs children, and to provide a family environment to as many orphans as possible by significantly reducing the number of orphanages and supporting Russian adoption, added the ombudsman.

Russian MPs pass Dima Yakovlev Bill

Russia’s State Duma passed the amended Dima Yakovlev Bill Wednesday, which will blacklist foreign human rights abusers from any country not only the US.

The bill will also blacklist US funded non-profits engaged in political activity in Russia.

The document was supported by 400 MPs, 4 were against and two abstained.

The bill is a counter measure to the adoption of the so-called “Magnitsky Act” by the US Senate.

Voice of Russia, RIA

Russian MPs approve tougher version of Dima Yakovlev list

Lada Korotun

Russia’s State Duma adopted the “Dima Yakovlev” draft law in the second decisive reading Thursday.

The law envisages slapping sanctions against foreign citizens of any country, abusing Russians’ rights, and also bans US-funded nonprofits in Russia.

The adopted bill is a harsher version of the draft law in retaliation for the US-adopted ”Magnitsky Act” which imposes sanctions against Russian officials allegedly linked to the death of the Hermitage Group lawyers Magnitsky in a pre-trial detention center.

Russian MPs voted for visa and economic sanctions against human rights abusers in the first reading and added the NPOs ban provision in the second main reading, says Vladimir Pligin from the State Duma Constitutional Law Committee .

The bill was named after two-year-old Dima Yakovlev a Russian orphan who died in the US being left in a car locked by his US father for nine hours on a hot day. A US court found no crime in the man’s actions. MP from A Just Russia party Alexander Tarnavsky said the List is to commemorate all Russian children who were adopted by American parents and later died under their supervision.

The deaths of Russian kids adopted by US parents are outrageous. Many times, the guilty parents remained underpunished, like in the case of Dima or Ivan Skorobogatov. According to Russia’s children's ombudsman Pavel Astakhov, over 20 children have died in the US but their adoptive parents were only mildly punished. (end)

So, the new bill will cover those US officials who have abused rights of Russian citizens, illegally imprisoned them or delivered too harsh court sentences against Russian citizens.

Blacklist will include special agents who abducted Russian citizens abroad, judges who delivered inadequate sentences and Guantanamo chief wardens guilty of torture.

Thus, Russia’s businessman Viktor Bout convicted in the US has never been to America which didn’t stop the US from chasing him all over the world.

Now, all US officials or organizations linked to violating Russians’ rights in the United States will have their Russian assets frozen.

The third reading of the bill is scheduled for December 21. Then the bill needs to be approved by the upper chamber of the parliament and the President.

Once adopted, the law will come into force on January 1, 2013.

MPs say the law doesn’t target foreigners but first and foremost protects Russians.

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