Chinese adoptions again in the news

Date: 
2008-03-11

Authorities are said to take children away from their parents

Iris Pronk/Trouw
March 11,  2008

The 7-year old Zeng Hong from the Chines province Hunan has a twinsister. But she and her parents have no idea where the girls is. In fact, in April 2002, Zeng’s little sister was taken away by a civil servant, because her parents could not pay the fine. That fine is part of the one child policy, that limits the number of children Chinese couples may have.

The parents of the girl tell their story tonight in the TV programme ‘Netwerk’.

When father and mother later had saved the necessary amount of money to pay the fine, they claimed their daughter back. But the local authorities said the child had been adopted abroad and would and untraceable.

’Netwerk’ got two other Chinese couples in front of the camera, with a similar history: their (grand) child was also taken by someone of the office for family planning. He brought the childen to the Shaoyang Social Welfare Institute in Hunan, from where it probably got adopted by a foreign couple. Without consent or knowledge of the parents.

Two Dutch adoption agencies did in 2003 business with the Shaoyang children’s home. Through Wereldkinderen [Children of the World] seven children came from this home to the Netherlands, through Meiling ten. It is not sure of proven that these cases concern children that were taken away.

Last year Trouw reported on another adoption scandal in the province Hunan: child traders earned for many years big money with the sale of possibly hundreds of children. China has always assured that none of these trafficked children ended up in the Netherlands.

It is, however, to be questioned how much value these Chinese statements have, says adoption expert René Hoksbergen: „China does not want to loose its face, especially not with the Olympics in sight.” He calls the witnessing statements of the three Chinese couples in ’Netwerk’ shocking and considers that the Netherlands should suspend adoptions of Chinese children. „There is reasonable doubt about the trustworthiness of the Chinese authorities. That’s why Justice must have the courage to say: we will first investigate this fully”, according to Hoksbergen.

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