A group of Korean adopters in Europe is urging authorities to investigate their adoptions, which they say are based on forged documents and involve abuses of rights.
About 200,000 South Koreans have been adopted overseas in the past decades, mostly in the 1970s and 80s and mostly to white parents in the US and Europe.
Critics argue that past authoritarian leaders saw adoption as a way to reduce mouths, solve the “problem” of unmarried mothers and deepen relationships. relations with the democratic West.
“Our main goal is that all adoptees should have access to their own real information – background information,” said Peter Moller, lawyer and co-leader of the Danish Rights Korea group , who was adopted in Denmark in 1974.
“We are now fighting for our right to know our own true story,” he added at a press conference in Seoul.
He added that more than 300 applications have been submitted by Korean adopters calling for an investigation Korea Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
The Commission is a government agency responsible for investigating incidents that occurred from the Japanese rule of Korea in 1910 until the end of dictatorship in South Korea in 1993.
Hundreds of applications related to adoption have been submitted by people in Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, the US and other countries.
Many want the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to find out if the government should be held accountable for its failure to monitor agencies and confirm whether the increase in adoptions was driven by payments and donations. growing from foster parents or not.
It is this claim that many believe agencies have an incentive to create their own supplies.
Complaints include inaccurate or forged information in adoption documents that falsifies their biological origin, such as false birth names, dates or locations, or details about parents to lay.
“The reason why we want to find out the truth of past incidents is not to punish someone but to resolve resentment (of the adopters) and prevent the recurrence of similar incidents,” activist Min Young Chang read in a joint statement by Korean Citizens’ Groups.
“As we address their resentments, overseas adopters can restore their identities and reconcile with Korean and adoption agencies.”
The commission said it plans to receive applications from adopters on December 9 and make a decision on whether to open an investigation by the end of the month.