March 9, 2009: Amid concern about reports of kidnapping and child trafficking, Ireland’s ministers have decided to discontinue a five-year adoption agreement with Vietnam until a new deal can be reached.
The article on the decision, which comes in the Times Online, is part of a larger pattern of revelations about the Vietnamese adoption system, which reached a climax in 2006 with the exposure of My Linh Soland, nicknamed “Dr. Evil” in the Irish press. Soland told reporters from The Irish Independent that she invented adopted children’s histories and paid off top Communist Party officials.
The ministers’ decision seems to have been informed by this year’s report on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) from the US State Department, which found “multiple arrests of private citizens and government officials for offering payments to birth parents in exchange for relinquishing infant children for adoption, creating fraudulent documents to conceal the child’s identity, and trafficking these children to other provinces where they were offered for adoption. In addition there were documented cases in which small children and infants were kidnapped and sold for adoption to persons in Europe, North America, or China.”
The Irish decision leaves stranded nearly 300 people who had been approved to adopt children from Vietnam.