Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

No More Adoption of Children by Foreigners, Ethiopian Parliament rules!

No More Adoption of Children by Foreigners, Ethiopian Parliament rules!

Jolie adopted a six-month old girl Zahra back in 2005.

Ethiopia has banned the adoption of children by foreigners amid fears some are facing neglect and abuse in their new lives overseas.

Hollywood stars Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are among the thousands of Americans who have adopted children from Ethiopia. Department officials have suggested the numbers could rise if the USA adoption community helped to address some countries' concerns about ethics and oversight.

The issue of adopting children from Ethiopia has been controversial, particularly after a 13-year-old girl died mysteriously in the U.S. in 2013 and her adopted parents were subsequently convicted.

Ethiopian officials have informed the Department of State that as of November 8, 2017, the ONLY adoption cases that the government of Ethiopia will allow to proceed to completion under Ethiopia's current law are cases with a completed Form I-604 determination OR cases that have a Form I-604 determination that is now pending with the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa.

On Tuesday (9 January), the Ethiopian parliament approved legislation banning global adoptions.

The issue was thrust into the limelight in 2013 when U.S. couple Larry and Carri Williams were found guilty of starving and beating their adopted Ethiopian daughter to death. She was found in the yard of her adoptive parents' Washington home in 2011. In 2016, Denmark banned adoptions from Ethiopia, claiming a lack of data on the origins of children adopted from the country could facilitate trafficking. The US suspended adoptions from Ethiopia last March.

Several Ethiopian MPs raised concerns about the new legislation and argued that there were not enough facilities in place in Ethiopia to house and safeguard vulnerable children.

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