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Number of orphans in Russia on the decline

November 28, 2013, 20:19 UTC+3 ) - The Russian Investigation Committee said on Thursday that the number of revealed orphaned children in Russia had been on the decline. ¶ “Over the past five years
At the same time, the overall number of orphaned children and children left without parental care in Russia remains extremely high
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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Bobylev

November 28. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Investigation Committee said on Thursday that the number of revealed orphaned children in Russia had been on the decline.

“Over the past five years, the state has taken measures to improve the situation with the observation of the rights of orphaned children who live in guardian institutions or stay in adoptive or substitute families. The number of orphanages is going down,” Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for the Russian Investigation Committee, told Itar-Tass after a meeting of the Investigation Committee’ board which considered measures to prevent, reveal and investigate crimes linked to adoption of children left without parental care by adoptive parents, including foreign nationals.

According to Russian human rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov, the number of annually revealed orphaned children has dwindled by 40 percent. Russia had 124,400 orphaned children late in 2007 compared to 74,700 children in 2012. At the same time, the overall number of orphaned children and children left without parental care in Russia remains impermissibly high.

Astakhov pointed to numerous facts when adoption decisions had to be cancelled. Seventy-five court decisions, including three involving foreign nationals, were canceled in 2012. Parents failed to meet their obligations to give proper upbringing to the adopted children in 16 out of those cases (2 cases involved foreign nationals). One court ruling was overturned because of foster parents’ harsh treatment of their adopted child.

Alexander Bastrykin, the head of the Russian Investigation Committee, emphasized that active protection of the rights of under aged children was one of its main tasks.

“All-round care for children and their harmonious upbringing, healthy moral and physical development is an absolute priority for any civilized state and society. Kindness and attention to the growing generation are a criterion of civil consciousness and a sign of social maturity. The provision of safe and protected childhood has become one of Russia’s national priorities over the past ten years,” Bastrykin said.

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