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Child ombudsman offers U.S. swimmer to obtain Russian passport

English.news.cn   2013-12-13 18:02:58            

MOSCOW, Dec. 13 (Xinhua) -- Paralympics swimming champion Jessica Long would be able to adopt a Russian orphan if she obtains Russian citizenship, presidential Children Rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov said on Friday.

"According to the law, a U.S. citizen cannot adopt a Russian child. If she obtains Russian citizenship, then she'll be able (to do so)," Astakhov told reporters.

Long, now 22, was born in Irkutsk region in Siberia and was adopted by a U.S. family from Baltimore when she was 13 months old.

Earlier this month, she announced her desire to adopt a baby from the same orphanage in Irkutsk region where she spent first months of her life.

Long, a person disabled from birth (she has no feet), won 14 gold medals in the Paralympics Games in 2004, 2008, 2012. She was abandoned by her mother shortly after the birth.

At birth, Jessica has had Russian names Tanya Kirillova.

Astakhov said that as a Russian-born person, Long could restore her Russian citizenship fast.

The so-called Dima Yakovlev Act enforced in Russia in January 2013 prohibits U.S. citizens to adopt Russian children.

Related:

Moscow seeks clarification over reported abuse of Russian orphans in U.S.

MOSCOW, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- Moscow has demanded clarification from the United States over reported abuse of Russian children adopted by U.S. families, authorities said Tuesday.

Alexander Bastrykin, head of the Investigative Committee, has sent an official letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to seek clarification, committee spokesman Vladimir Markin told reporters.  Full story

Editor: Hou Qiang
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