Belgium children face DNA tests amid DR Congo kidnap fears

BBC News

"Belgian authorities have asked for DNA samples of children adopted from the Democratic Republic of Congo to establish if their biological parents are still alive," under the suspicion that the children may have been kidnapped, according to this article from BBC News. "Fears of child-smuggling in DR Congo prompted the central African country to halt exit permits for adopted children in 2013," says the article. However, some intercountry adoptions were able to go through past 2013 because the processes had already begun, previous to the country's decision to halt exit permits. The article highlights the cases of four children from DR Congo who were adopted in Belgium. A team of journalists identified the biological parents of these children who "said their children had been given the opportunity of going with a young organisation to a holiday camp but had never returned." Since then, Belgian authorities have investigated 15 other adoptions of children who came from the same orphanage.