YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT FOR THE EIGHTY NEPAL PIPELINE FAMILIES
Messages Sent So Far
Although the Nepal Pipeline families are still experiencing long delays in the processing of investigations and issuing of visas to newly adopted Nepali orphans, and some of these families are still stranded in Kathmandu while others are anxiously waiting in the United States, your help and support has resulted in at least four visas being issued and we hope for more every day. We gratefully appreciate your continued efforts in this endeavor.
Recently you were sent a letter from The Office of Children's Issues Overseas Citizens Services Bureau of Consular Affairs. The letter directed you to Next Generation Nepal's video promotions for founder Conor Grennan?s book, ?Little Princes: One Man?s Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal.?
Although the Office of Children?s Issues' letter included a statement admitting that the contents of the videos had not been, and could not be, verified, the videos were sent to you anyway. And they are moving and beautiful videos. But we want to be sure that you know that these videos have nothing to do with adoption in Nepal and most certainly nothing to do with the 80 families caught in the pipeline.
It strains credulity to believe that that letter and the accompanying videos were not sent to your office to reduce your continued support for the Nepal Pipeline Families. The videos are heart warming and stirring, but to use them as a response to your support for families stuck in the pipeline is terribly manipulative and disingenuous.
Your continued help advocating on our behalf with the Department of State to expedite these visas is invaluable and so we offer a response to the video messages you were sent.
1) Next Generation Nepal's own website says that the children they are concerned with were taken from their families under the pretext of protecting children from Maoist abductions. As the website states, ?Child traffickers, preying on locals? fears of Maoist abductions, deceive[d] families living under these brutal conditions by promising their children safe haven at top boarding schools in the Kathmandu Valley, one of the few regions free from Maoist control. For this service they collect[ed] vast sums from already impoverished families. Once they [had] guardianship over the children and [had] removed them from the village, however, they dump[ed] the children in orphanages in Kathmandu, then cut off contact with the parents who live in remote mountainous regions accessible only by foot.?
The NGN website further states that the children were at the very outside ??as young as three and four years old...? when brought to Kathmandu -- not infants as most of the pipeline children were when they were brought in. Most of the pipeline children aren't even five years old as of today.
2) Although we all very much respect and support the work of NGN in reuniting trafficked and displaced children with their families, using video which was produced in order to promote the upcoming release of a book to sway opinions is deeply disturbing. A book advert is hardly a source of reliable, valid data.
3) Child trafficking is driven by profit - it does not flourish where there are no financial gains. The most recent official United States Government report and other sources cite many forms of trafficking but none for purposes of international adoption. The average age of trafficked children in Nepal is eight to twelve years and Nepali children are primarily trafficked for sex, domestic work and Indian circuses. Sometimes, though rarely, children as young as four are taken for circus training. There has not been a significant trafficking issue in Nepal concerning international adoption as was seen in Vietnam and Cambodia. Rather, child trafficking in Nepal is most often focused on child prostitution, labor, and circus performance. Children under the age of eight or nine are not likely to be trafficked, and children under five years even less so.
4) It so happens that one of the Pipeline parents knew of NGN and actually emailed them recently about their efforts in searching for families.
She asked them about the possibility of taking her child's picture with them on their next journey in hopes that if her adopted daughter had searching parents they would be found. However, after one brief email from the executive director saying amongst other things that NGN relies heavily on information from the child to help narrow down the family's location -- it became clear that NGN has a clear and specific focus on the children who were displaced during the earlier Maoist uprising ? older children who were very likely trafficked, not infants who were much more likely to have been abandoned and are therefore eligible for adoption.
The Nepal Pipeline children simply do not fall into the category of the children NGN works with.
The Nepal Pipeline children were found very young, most of them toddlers and infants. Infants, when trafficked, are almost always trafficked for adoption ? but adoption has been shut down in Nepal from 2007 until 2009 and from 2006-2007 it was hardly a ?profit? driven enterprise. Yes, we have seen infant trafficking in Vietnam, in Cambodia, in many places where the doors are open, the demand is high and the regulation low ? but that isn?t what happened here. The majority of the children in the pipeline went into the orphanages either just before the 2007 shut down or during the shutdown. And for the most part they went in as infants. There was not the same opportunity for profits to be made as has been seen in other situations. Instead these children were much more likely abandoned due to poverty, the threat of honor killings of unwed mothers and illegitimate newborns, or the societal rejection of the children of a widowed mother.
We respectfully request that Members of Congress continue to pressure and petition the DOS and USCIS to deal with the Nepal Pipeline cases immediately.
And if you have a moment, we?d like you to see these videos:
International Adoption Both Ends Burning
Nepal Pipeline: Our Children
Nepali Children Labor and Prostitution
Adoption ban keeps family apart
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