The Swedes have adopted about 60,000 children worldwide since the 1950s, according to the daily Dagens Nyheter, many of them from Asia or South America.
But there are growing concerns that some of the children have been stolen from their parents or bought by criminal networks who have offered them for adoption with the help of local authorities who have provided false documents.
“We will have to investigate how adoption practices worked in Sweden between 1960 and 1990,” said Lena Hallengren, the country’s health and social affairs minister.
Hallengren has not yet provided further details about the investigation.
More and more information about irregularities related to international adoptions has begun to surface in recent years.
In 2018, a Chilean commission that analyzed the practice found that thousands of children from poor families were sent abroad without parental consent between 1950 and 2000.
In some cases, mothers were told that the baby died at birth when in fact it was given for international adoption.
Swedish families have adopted about 2,000 children from Chile since the 1970s.
Dutch authorities announced this month that they will suspend international adoptions after a government commission discovered irregularities dating back up to 60 years.
The number of international adoptions has gradually decreased in Sweden since the beginning of the millennium, reaching less than 400 in 2019 from about 1,000 in the 2000s, according to data from the Swedish Bureau of Statistics.
Most adoptions in Sweden are organized by non-profit organizations under government supervision.
Swiss authorities also announced in December last year that they would review the possible illegal adoption of children abroad, three years after a scandal broke out over allegations that some adopted children in Sri Lanka had been stolen by drug traffickers. live meat from their biological families.
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