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ASTRAKHAN, August 28. /TASS/. The office of Russia’s Foreign Ministry in Astrakhan has received an appeal from a local resident who has recognized one of her grandsons on a video from an orphanage in Iraq, office head Oleg Kolomin told TASS on Monday.
The woman who called herself Markhaba recognized her one-year-old grandson on a video by RT international news channel from an orphanage in Iraq. As it emerged, the woman is also looking in Iraq for her 4-year-old grand-daughter who is a Russian citizen as well. The children’s parents left for Turkey in 2015 and then moved to Syria and farther to Iraq. Their fate is currently unknown.
"We have received a statement and are now working on it in interaction with the children’s ombudswoman for the Astrakhan Region," Kolomin said.
As was reported earlier, Markhaba has previously turned to children’s ombudswoman for the Astrakhan Region Alexandra Kurmayeva. The ombudswoman said on Monday that "the work on this appeal is continuing" but declined to give any details.
A TASS source in the region’s law-enforcement agencies said that a DNA analysis would most likely be required to establish the child’s kinship with the Astrakhan family.
Russian Presidential Envoy for Children’s Rights Anna Kuznetsova earlier told journalists that a special commission would deal with the problem of returning the Russian children brought by their parents to the area of combat operations in the Middle East. A roadmap should also be developed to work out an algorithm of actions in each case.
With the assistance of Chechnya Head Ramzan Kadyrov, four-year-old Bilal Tagirov has been returned to Russia from an Iraqi orphanage. The child’s father brought his two-year old son first to Syria and then to Iraq.
Kadyrov said later that his representatives had visited the Al Salhiya orphanage in Baghdad where they found another six children who were presumably Russian citizens. The relatives of four of them have been found in the North Caucasus Republic of Dagestan.
Deputy Chairman of the Committee for International Affairs in the upper house of Russia’s parliament Ziyad Sabsabi has set off for Iraq to render assistance to children from Russia.
According to Kadyrov, "from 35 to 40 citizens of the Russian Federation and up to 100 citizens of the CIS are staying in other orphanages in Baghdad and about the same number is staying in the area of Mosul and Kurdistan."
Later, on August 11, Envoy of the Head of Dagestan for the Protection of the Family, Motherhood and Children’s Rights Marina Yezhova told TASS she had received over 200 appeals for the return of children whose parents had left to fight for terrorists in Syria and Iraq.