Yesterday at the Democratic Republic of Congo Embassy in Washington, DC, the country?s new Ambassador to the United States (U.S.), H.E. Fran?ois Balumuene, met with American families awaiting exit permits for their adopted Congolese children as well as children adopted from the DRC already residing in the United States.
These permits have been suspended since 2013, when the DRC government instituted a moratorium to allow for a review of procedures governing international adoptions. Following the meeting, the Ambassador released the following statement:
“Yesterday, I was pleased to share news with these adoptive families that the DRC?s National Assembly is currently reviewing and will soon vote on a draft law that creates a new system for adoption processes in the country. We hope to see this law passed in the near future and the subsequent unification of parents with their adoptive children. Addressing this issue has been a priority for our government, and I am pleased to report this progress soon after my arrival in the United States.?
?Our government, like others, takes great care in addressing the adoption of Congolese children by foreign parents. We recognize that the period during which our government has reviewed and considered revisions to this process has been trying and difficult for the families involved. Our goal is to ensure that all adoptions comply with domestic and international laws and that our children receive the best care and love when they leave the country. The pending adoption law is an important element in this regard, and as we monitor its effectiveness we also look forward to partnering with American adoptive families to advance our common interests.?
A moratorium on international adoptions was first initiated in the DRC in 2013 due to domestic and international adoption law violations involving the kidnapping of Congolese children from their families.