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Vladimir Putin - World Economic Forum Annual M...

Vladimir Putin – World Economic Forum Annual Meeting Davos 2009 (Photo credit: World Economic Forum)

The Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a ban on US citizens adopting Russian orphans on the 1st January. The ban simply means thousands of Russian orphans will go without a home and remain in notoriously appalling conditions. It is a political move in reaction to the Magnitsky Act recently passed by the US congress preventing Russian officials accused of human rights violations from entering the US.

Since 1992 more than 60,000 Russian orphans have been adopted by US families, 46 Russian orphans have now lost all hope as they were about to join families but have now been prevented. Thousands of children are left unwanted in orphanages across Russia every year, in which beatings and abuse are commonplace. According to Unicef 1/3 end up homeless, 20% become criminals and 10% commit suicide. If that isn’t an indicator of the conditions in which they are raised I don’t know what is. A great amount of stigma is attached to adopting children in Russia, it is culturally rare, therefore many children rely on foreign saviours.

Putin is using innocent children as a pawn in his political games in an attempt to shock the world into compliance with his corrupt and cruel regime. He does not care about the fate of these children as he leaves them to rot in horrendous conditions no child should be subject to. He ought to be happy to see them go to loving families, as a way of reducing his burden, but instead tugs on the heartstrings of those wishing to help, and crushes the hopes of many. This cruel act should not be met with sadness and compliance but uprising and repulsion. I will be looking out for a petition to place pressure on the Russian government to repeal this ban, and if I find one I will be posting it and encouraging everyone to sign it, please to the same and let me know if you find anything.