by Hauwa Gambo

The Associated Press has just now confirmed that the Russian parliament has just given preliminary approval to ban adoption of Russian children by Americans.

This follows a debate yesterday on the bill, in spite of strong objections from senior minister.

The lower house of parliament, called the State Duma, passed the law after the United recently passed a law penalising some Russian officials implicated in the death of a lawyer in prison.

In what Russia’s lawmakers clearly said is pay-back, they drew up this legislation which also closes down US adoption agencies in the country.

Defending the bill, Olga Batalina, a politician with the ruling United Russia party, said: “It is rather immoral to shift responsibility for Russian children onto nationals of other countries,” said Olga Batalina, a politician with the ruling party, United Russia.

The bill is named after Dima Rakovlev, a Russian baby who died in 2008 of heat-stroke after the American man who adopted him forgot him in a car.

Key ministers have opposed the law, saying it will affect many orphans with disabilities that “Russians are often reluctant to adopt.”