Child trafficking through illegal adoption a new trend

National 1 minute, 18 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

TRAFFICKING of children through illegal adoption is emerging as a new trend in Brunei, said an official from Indonesian embassy yesterday.

Counsellor of Protocol and Consular Affairs, Deny Tri Basuki, told _The Brunei Times _that in 2014 the embassy recorded three cases of illegal adoption involving Indonesian babies born to unwed mothers working in the Sultanate.

“Even though the baby is born in Brunei, they must follow Indonesian law because the baby is an Indonesian citizen,” Deny said on the sidelines of a briefing on human trafficking.

In order to legitimise the adoption, the adoptive parents should obtain a birth certificate from the Immigration Department and go through the adoption process at the Syariah Court. “According to our regulations, the adoptive pa-rent should go to Indonesia and legalise through the courts there.”

“If Brunei-ans want to adopt an Indonesian baby, we urge them to follow the Indonesian laws. We are not in a position to refuse, and say you cannot adopt.”

Although the United Nations acknowledges that illegal adoption is not in the Trafficking in Persons Protocol, it still considers the practice of obtaining children – through abduction, coercion, or other illegal means – to be child trafficking.

In a 2009 report , the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) listed illegal adoption as one of the main reasons why children are trafficked in Southeast Asia.

The United Nations body said that existing literature overwhelmingly concentrates on trafficking for sexual exploitation, while research on more diverse forms – such as trafficking of children for adoption and marriage – is still lacking.

The Brunei Times