Yang Shuiying and two of her daughters on the front porch of her house in Tianxi village, Guizhou province. Another daughter was taken away by a family planning official, who said he was going to sell the child for foreign adoption. (Barbara Demick / Los Angeles Times)

This is not okay with me:

In some rural areas, instead of levying fines for violations of China’s child policies, greedy officials took babies, which would each fetch $3,000 in adoption fees.

“I’m going to sell the baby for foreign adoption. I can get a lot of money for her,” he told the sobbing mother as he drove her with the baby to an orphanage in Zhenyuan, a nearby city in the southern province of Guizhou. In return, he promised that the family wouldn’t have to pay fines for violating China’s one-child policy.

Then he warned her: “Don’t tell anyone about it.”

For five years, she kept the terrible secret. “I didn’t understand that they didn’t have the right to take our babies,” she said.

Since the early 1990s, more than 80,000 Chinese children have been adopted abroad, the majority to the United States.

The conventional wisdom is that the babies, mostly girls, were abandoned by their parents because of the traditional preference for boys and China’s restrictions on family size. No doubt, that was the case for tens of thousands of the girls.

But some parents are beginning to come forward to tell harrowing stories of babies who were taken away by coercion, fraud or kidnapping — sometimes by government officials who covered their tracks by pretending that the babies had been abandoned.”

Read the rest of the article here.

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