Accessibility links

Breaking News

Ethiopia Approves Ban on Foreign Adoptions

  • VOA News

FILE - A pair of sisters adopted in Ethiopia hold flags as they listen to the singing of the national anthem at an adoption day ceremony in New York, Nov. 18, 2010.

Ethiopian lawmakers passed a resolution Tuesday that will ban foreign adoption of Ethiopian children amid concerns of mistreatment overseas.

The new measure was approved after a heated debate, as critics fear that the country does not have the resources, including child care centers, to handle the effects of the ban.

FILE - Aaron Lieberman holds his son Theodore, 2, adopted from Ethiopia, as he shows his citizenship certificate, during the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Adoption Day ceremony on Nov. 18, 2010, in New York.
FILE - Aaron Lieberman holds his son Theodore, 2, adopted from Ethiopia, as he shows his citizenship certificate, during the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Adoption Day ceremony on Nov. 18, 2010, in New York.

Ethiopia had been among the top countries for adoption in the United States, according to State Department figures. But following the death in the U.S. of an Ethiopian child at the hands of her adoptive mother in 2011, and another adopted child killed in the U.S. by her parents in 2013, Ethiopia vastly decreased foreign adoptions and increased debate surrounding the issue.

Ethiopia's new National Child Policy states that orphans should only grow up in their homeland, learning their country's traditions and culture.

FILE - Sunday school children perform during the Meskel Festival to commemorate the discovery of the true cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified on at the Meskel Square in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, Sept. 26, 2016.
FILE - Sunday school children perform during the Meskel Festival to commemorate the discovery of the true cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified on at the Meskel Square in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, Sept. 26, 2016.

"They should either be adopted locally or supported by a guardian family, tutor, or help them to reunite with biological parents or relatives," it says.

But many critics worry that child care centers will be overburdened, as there is not a widespread culture of adoption within Ethiopia.

Your opinion

Show comments

XS
SM
MD
LG