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US refuses to set up joint mechanism to keep track of adopted Russian children — senator

The possibility of lifting the so-called Dima Yakovlev law is not being discussed, Federation Council member Yekaterina Lakhova said

VIENNA, June 13. /TASS/. No discussion is on at the moment over the possibility of lifting the ban from the adoption of Russian children by US citizens, Federation Council member Yekaterina Lakhova has told TASS, adding that the US side refuses to create a mechanism for keeping track of Russian children adopted earlier.

"The Dima Yakovlev law is based on hard-earned experience and its adoption was very correct. I doubt that its cancellation may be discussed," said Lakhova, the leader of the Russian Women’s Union NGO after attending the second OSCE gender equality review conference.

Lakhova said the lack of opportunities to keep an eye on the position of adopted children in US territory was at the heart of the matter.

"We have always delegated this mission to our consular offices, but in reality access to our children does not exist. A child may be adopted by people from one state, but then the family may move to some other place, and then to a third, where there is no tracking mechanism at all. I’ve been to the US embassy. I’ve suggested creating such a mechanism. Their answer is NO," Lakhova said.

In the meantime, in Russia "greater focus must be placed on problem families and every conceivable measure must be taken to ensure children be taken away from the families only in extreme situations."

Lakhova believes that Russia has already established a system of support for adoptive families and that creating still better incentives is crucial to eliminating the possibility of foreign adoptions.

In December 2012 Russia enacted a special law on measures against those responsible for violations of Russian citizens (Dima Yakovlev Law, called so in memory of a Russian boy who died in an adoptive family in the United States). It envisages sanctions against US citizens suspected of human rights violations and prohibits adoptions of Russian children by US families.