January 25, 2007
Joint Council staff and Board of Directors met with the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services on Monday in conjunction with our quarterly Board meeting. The following update was supplied to us by DOS:
DOS received positive news from Kazakhstan the week of January 15th, with an apparent decision by the office of the Mayor of Almaty to reinstate adoptions by U.S. citizens. As the Joint Council has shared with the membership and public at large, the Almaty office had previously maintained a unilateral ban on American adoptions, even after the Kazakhstani national government again began accepting American adoption dossiers in late 2005. We believe the reopening of Almaty will prove to be in the best interests of many Kazakhstani children who will now be able to find permanent homes and families in the United States. DOS office director Ellen Conway is likely to travel to Kazakhstan in February and will have meetings on adoption issues. We will continue to update the membership on any new developments as they are received by the Joint Council office.