MEPs debate Romanian
EITHNE DONNELLAN, Health
Correspondent, in Strasbourg
Wed, Jan 19, 2011
SOME 9,950 children were
“exported” from Romania between 1997 and 2000, the European Parliament
was told yesterday, during a debate on whether more could be done to save
children from a life of institutional care within the EU.
Romanian MEP Victor
Bostinaru said his country, which “exported” so many children, would
never again “accept such an abomination”. He said people had to learn
from what happened as “opening the gates widely for international
adoption” had meant for Romania child-trafficking networks, kidnappings
and children being sold in western Europe.
His colleague MEP Elena
Basescu said Romania was under pressure to resume international adoption,
halted in 2001, but there were more families in Romania wishing to adopt
than children available, despite about 22,000 children in care centres
Romanian legislation did
not provide for the relinquishment of parents’ rights to their children
unless there had been abuse, she added.
Roberta Angelilli, an
Italian MEP who introduced the debate, said there were many abandoned
children across Europe. They could end up in poverty or exploited by
organised crime for prostitution, organ-trafficking and illegal adoption.
These children had a right to be adopted and should not stay in an
institution for longer than necessary.
Slovak MEP Monika Flašíková-Benová
said the problem of abandoned children in Europe was getting more and more
serious. “We have to abolish the rights of biological parents if they do
not care for the children,” she said.
Fine Gael MEP Seán Kelly
said prospective adoptive parents whose bone fides were beyond reproach
should be facilitated in giving a child a home and not be encumbered with
lengthy processes. The parliament heard some families were paying up to
€30,000 to begin the adoption process.
A resolution on the issue
is due to be voted on today.
© 2011 The Irish Times
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