From The Elysian Republican, May 1, 2065
Elysian foreign minister, Victor Long, has again urged terrestrial governments to outlaw international child adoptions. According to the FM there is ample evidence that many adopted children end up as slaves in the Asteroid Belt. And despite increased controls of the League of Lagrangian Settlements, still a few hundred children have been launched from Earth to the Asteroid Belt last year.
“Our intelligence services,” Mr Long said, “have found evidence that malicious adoption agencies not only continue their operation but have actually increase their evil activities. The number of free settlements in the Asteroid Belt is growing, so is the demand for labour there.”
Free settlements is the controversial term used by Lagrangian governments to refer to the communities in the Asteroid Belt not founded by governments or large organizations. Elysian political scientist Angela Sukova has protested against this term, but so far to no avail.
“The problem is,” Victor Long argues, “is that those free communities do not recognize any authority above them. So it’s hard to see what happen to children supposedly adopted by those pioneers. But we have received information from concerned settlers in the region, which confirm that slavery is thriving in the Belt.
“Terrestrial child traders take advantage of the legal framework provided by, among others, The Hague Adoption Treaty and the general acceptance of international child adoption on Earth. They relentlessly approach troubled parents to give up their children for adoption. Usually the traders say the children will be adopted by a loving family and will get a better future.
“Needless to say, these are lies. The traders, who operate fake adoption agencies, have an eye for healthy children, and will leave special needs children behind. For practical reasons the age of the children varies between seven and twelve. Once the children are in space, they are usually sold to other traders, who will bring them to the Asteroid Belt. There the children will be sold off to the final clients.”
According to an official report by the Elysian Intelligence Service, these children are used both as domestic workers and in agriculture. The reports states that currently 1,500 children are kept as slaves in the Asteroid Belt. However, the number of adult slaves is unknown.