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MOSCOW, March 10. /TASS/. No less than twenty adopted Russian children died in the US before the Russian authorities imposed a ban on adoptions and a part of the deaths might still be unknown, Konstantin Dolgov, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s special envoy for human rights, democracy and supremacy of law said in an interview published by Kommersant Daily on Tuesday.
"Veritable reports — in many ways thanks to assistance from the media and human rights activists — have been received on the deaths of more than twenty adopted Russian children in the US and it’s a wild guess how many cases might have been lost on the way to us," he said.
Upon adoption, Russian children received new first names and family names in the US and that is why their dramas might have remained unknown.
"More than twenty cases I’ve mentioned here are what is known today and this figure is really big, too," Dolgov said. "Nothing of the kind has ever happened in any other country."
As regards other countries, he said separate cases of the death of adopted Russian children had occurred there, too, but their authorities informed us on them immediately and cooperated diligently with Russian law enforcement agencies and organizations and guilty were eventually brought to account."
Moscow has questions to the US as regards other aspects of assuring the rights of Russian children there. "I mean protection against harmful information in the Internet, struggle with the exploitations of child labor, the functioning of Internet exchanges for children in the U.S., pedophilia, and other problems," Dolgov said.
Although the Russian side has passed a law banning adoptions of Russian children by American citizens, the US authorities still have a number of international obligations to the children who had been adopted earlier.
"Also, there’s a consulate convention and a number of other agreements," Dolgov recalled. "Last but not least, the US authorities bear responsibility on the decisions on adoption that were endorsed earlier."
"The Americans are still expected to hand in to us more than a thousand reports on the life of adopted children, which they are supposed to send to the relevant Russian agencies regularly," he said.
"Still if the American side takes account of our legitimate complaints, there will be reasons then to consider various options for cooperation in the sphere," Dolgov said. "As for now, unfortunately, I keep up permanent contacts with the Investigations Committee, the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Ministry of Education, Ombudsman Astakhov and progress isn’t reporter anywhere."
"On the contrary, problems are piling up," he said.