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FC members suggest complete ban on foreign adoptions

February 20, 2013, 11:54 UTC+3

The issue was raised in connection with the death of Maxim Kuzmin, 3, from the Pskov region in a U.S. foster family

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MOSCOW, February 20 (Itar-Tass) - Federation Council members suggested mulling complete ban on foreign adoptions in Russia. The issue was raised in connection with the death of Maxim Kuzmin, 3, from the Pskov region in a U.S. foster family.

"I severely judged my nation, my people who agreed to Russian children's being taken abroad; I believe it's humiliating for the nation, and dishonors it for centuries," FC member from the Krasnodar Territory Nikolai Kondtratenko said.

"Let's protect our children and not give them away abroad," he said.

The parliamentarian also called for seeking the return of all the Russian children adopted by Americans: "We have to tell them - 'we're asking you to return to Russia all the children you got from us. We have enough resources /to bring up children/, if necessary, we'll find resources, and sell some owners' yachts."

Volgograd region senator Vladimir Plotnikov shared his view: "I'm simply indignant at the situation where every day we see our children killed! Respected colleagues, we must make tough decisions to stop this madness: "Russia is a powerful country to protect and educate its children. We have to make a tough decision, otherwise nobody will understand or forgive us."

On Tuesday, the Investigative Committee said it had opened a criminal case over the murder of Russian boy Maxim Kuzmin in a U.S. adoptive family.

"The criminal case was opened under Article 105, Part 2 of Russia's Criminal Code. The SK will take all the necessary measures to arraign the child's adoptive mother," SK spokesman Vladimir Markin told Tass.

Russian children's ombudsman Pavel Astakhov wrote on Twitter that Maxim Kuzmin had been beaten up /according to the investigators/ by his adoptive mother, who had been giving him strong psychedelic drugs for a long time.

The boy died before the ambulance arrived. According to forensic experts, he had numerous injuries. The U.S. foster mother has been allowed to see another child, Maxim's brother Kirill, 2, once a week, according to the ombudsman.

Astakhov said Texas prosecutors were ready to cooperate with Russia in investigating Maxim's death. "I've discussed the details of Maxim Kuzmin's death with the Russian consul general in Texas. The prosecutor's office of this state is ready to cooperate in the investigation. Aside from Maxim, the family adopted his two-year-old brother Kirill," he said.

Russian Foreign Ministry representative for human rights, democracy and supremacy of law Konstantin Dolgov told Tass on Monday that the U.S. Department of States, unlike the local authorities, had not helped the Russian Embassy to learn the details of Maxim's death.

Maxim Kuzmin was killed on January 21. It is the 20th death of Russian children in U.S. foster families.

First deputy chairwoman of the Russian parliament committee for family, women and children Olga Batalina /United Russia faction/ urged the lawmakers to ask the U.S. Congress to ensure the safety of adopted Russian children.

"Unfortunately, the tragic story recurs in the United States, and only adoption ban can stop this vicious circle. We banned the adoption by U.S. citizens because the death of a Russian child is not a tragedy there; we see no measures taken over the facts of such deaths, which would make us hope that such situations will never happen again.

"There are almost 60,000 Russian children living in the USA. So I believe it is necessary to address the U.S. Congress on behalf of the State Duma and demand ensuring the safety of Russian child, changing the adoption system, and introducing tough control over the life of Russian children," Batalina stated.

Reports on Tuesday said the lawmakers might invite to the State Duma Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets and Education Minister Dmitry Livanov.

Deputy chairwoman of the house committee for labor, social policy and veterans' affairs Yelena Afanasyeva /Liberal Democratic Party/ reminded, in a five-minute statement before the plenary session, told speaker Sergei Naryshkin, that the LDPR faction insisted on promptly inviting Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets to the State Duma, as well as Education Minister Dmitry Livanov. The officials have to inform the lawmakers about the measures to prevent the adoption of Russian children into foreign foster families with asocial behavior.

"The State Duma has not heard such information for a long time. I believe, there is such necessity, especially because these officials have their own opinions regarding the adoption of Russian children by foreigners," she said.

Golodets' spokesman said the State Duma has a schedule of "Government Hours," according to which Golodets' visit is due in May: "There's been no decision about unscheduled meeting. If she's invited, we'll certainly consider it; but no invitation has come yet. The State Duma has a procedure under which the faction should put up its proposal for house vote, and in case it is supported, the invitation can be sent to the deputy prime minister; the parliament cannot change the schedule of officials' visit at the invitation or demand of one faction."

The press service of the Education Ministry said Livanov had not received any invitations to visit the parliament.

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