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Kingdom, Italy follow up on child adoption deals

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Cambodia and Italy on Tuesday said eight agencies would provide international child adoptions for three years. Photo supplied

Kingdom, Italy follow up on child adoption deals

Cambodia and Italy on Tuesday said eight agencies would provide international child adoptions for three years after agreeing in September to resume such services following their suspension in 2011.

The two countries decided in a meeting on Tuesday to divide the eight agencies into two groups – four per group – with the agencies to be decided by the Cambodian international child adoption central committee.

Each agency will work under Cambodian and Italian laws.

In September last year, the two nations signed an agreement on child adoption agencies to provide services in the Kingdom, but until now, none had been selected said Lev Sopheavy, the head of the Intercountry Adoption Administration at the Ministry of Social Affairs.

Sopheavy told The Post on Wednesday that the government had postponed children adoption services with other countries in 2011.

Certain countries were in negotiations on national and international adoption laws in Cambodia, which have been strengthened to properly control child adoption in the Kingdom.

“We have not approved child adoption cases because we need further discussions on the law and procedure. We will speed up work on the new laws.

“In the meantime, we are yet to approve the agencies regarding this issue. This is merely an assessment and negotiation mechanism, and not only with Italy but with other countries. For example, we were also in discussions with Spain,” Sopheavy said.

The notes of the Tuesday meeting obtained by The Post on Wednesday, Nim Thout, secretary of state at the Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans, and Youth Rehabilitation, and Gianni Bardini, an Italian government foreign affairs representative, said that based on international policy, child adoption aims to prevent child trafficking and promote child protection.

Children who do not have a family or who were abandoned can have a brighter future in the care of a permanent family through adoption.

Sopheavy said when the Inter-Country Children Adoption Agency was created, it would allow Cambodian orphans to find good families and a better chance in life as the agencies followed the law.

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