MOSCOW, December 17 (Itar-Tass) —— The constitutional legislation committee of the Russia State Duma lower parliament house will consider an amendment banning U.S. citizens to adopt Russian children and nullifying the Russian-U.S. adoptions agreement, Ekaterina Lakhova of the United Russia faction, an initiator of this amendment, told Itar-Tass on Monday.
“The amendment is undergoing final technical formalities and by the evening it will be submitted to the constitutional legislation committee,” she said. The committee will discuss the draft law titled “On Measures to Influence the Persons Involved in the Violation of Russian Citizens’ Rights,” which is seen as a Russian legislative response to the Magnitsky Act passed by the United States, later on Monday.
Along with the adoptions ban, the amendment co-initiated by Lakhova and Elena Afanasyev of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) faction, prohibits the activity of adoptions agencies working with U.S. citizens willing to adopt children from Russia.
Moreover, the amendment abrogates the Russia-U.S. adoptions agreement. “We want to formulate this proposal as a separate provision of the bill. I hope the committee will support us,” Lakhova said.
The lower house plans to hold the second reading of its legislative response to the U.S. Magnitsky Act on Wednesday, December 19.
In the mean time, deputy speaker Sergei Neverov told journalists on Monday the United Russia faction was ready to vote in favor of the amendment banning adoptions of Russian children to American foster families.
“I do not rule out that we will speak about either the suspension or a ban on adoptions,” he said. The constitutional legislation committee will agree the final wording of the amendment at its meeting at 18:00 Moscow time on Monday.
Neverov recalled numerous cases when Russian children died in American foster families and U.S. courts were openly lax in punishing the adoptive parents. “We want to ban American citizens adopt Russian children as long as such verdicts are passed,” he said.