Ethiopia's lawmakers approve ban on foreign adoptions

Ethiopia

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

Angelina Jolie adopted her daughter Zahara from Ethiopia in 2005. Department officials have suggested the numbers could rise if the US adoption community helped to address some countries' concerns about ethics and oversight.

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Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Marie Louise Parker and Connie Britton are just some of the many celebrities who have adopted children from the country.

But following the death in the USA 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.

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But this practice was put under the spotlight after a United States couple were of convicted of manslaughter in the gruesome starvation and hypothermia death of a teenage girl they adopted from Ethiopia.

Hana Williams, 13, was found dead in the backyard of their home in Washington state 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. If an adoption case has not reached this point as of November 8, 2017, the government of Ethiopia will not allow the case to proceed to completion. In light of this information, adoption agencies should not refer new Ethiopian adoption cases for USA prospective adoptive parents because the government of Ethiopia will not allow any new cases to be processed.

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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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