Netherlands halts all adoptions from abroad with immediate effect
The Netherlands is suspending all adoptions from abroad with immediate effect, Minister Sander Dekker for Legal Protection announced on Monday morning. The government made this decision after an investigative committee identified "structural abuses" in the Dutch adoption culture, NU.nl reports.
Dekker said that the Dutch government failed for years "by looking away from abuses". The government was too passive and failed to intervene when things went wrong.
The committee headed by Tjibbe Joustra investigated adoptions from abroad between 1967 and 1998. It identified numerous abuses, and added that abuses were still occurring to this day. The committee found signals of "falsification of documents, the abuse of poverty among the birth mothers, and the giving up of children for payment or because of coercion," among other things.
The Dutch government was already aware of abuses in the late 1960s, and in a number of cases government representatives were "involved in adoption abuses", the committee said. Though it added that they "found no indications of bribery or corruption of Dutch officials."
The committee concluded that the Dutch adoption system is "susceptible to fraud" and must be suspended immediately to prevent further abuses. The government decided to follow this advice.