Thursday, September 06, 2007

Ireland Suspends Adoption From Guatemala Because of Child Trafficking Concerns

The Adoption Authority of Ireland has said that it will no longer permit applications for adoption from Guatemala to Ireland because of serious concerns about the corruption of the Guatemalan adoption process.

Previously approved Guatemala adoption petitions will, however, continue to be honored and those Guatemalan adoptions still-in-process will be allowed to be completed.

This temporary action is based on several stated concerns including the following:
  • the lack of a prohibition in Guatemalan law against improper payments at various stages of the adoption process

  • lack of a system in Guatemala to accredit adoption service providers

  • lack of a Guatemalan central authority to oversee and safeguard the integrity of intercountry adoption process
Guatemala to Ireland adoptions are not yet governed by the Hague Treaty on Intercountry Adoptions because neither party has both signed and fully implemented the treaty requirements.

Ireland has signed the Hague Treaty on Intercountry Adoption but has yet to ratify and implement it.

Although Guatemala had signed the Hague Treaty, its legal status within Guatemala was questioned in a series of Guatemalan court cases. On May 16, 2007, the Congress of Guatemala clarified Guatemala's status within the Hague and affirmed its intentions to implement it. However, implementation has been slow and Guatemala continues to fall seriously short of the standards of the Hague Treaty.


More about Guatemala's status in regard to the Hague Convention

Temporary suspension of adoptions from Guatemala, The Irish Times, 16 August 2007

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