About 200 Russian mothers abroad can't defend rights to their children - Astakhov

Russia is helping Russian mothers abroad to defend the right to their own children, said Russian Children's Rights Commissioner Pavel Astakhov.

"We've been receiving an increasing number of letters from Russian citizens residing abroad and we are helping Russian mothers disregarding the reasons for their emigration," Astakhov told the Justice Ministry's senor officials in Moscow on Friday.

Foreign men often lure their chosen Russian wives into emigration and then tell them, "You are free, but the children by our laws must stay with the father," he said.

"Some 200 letters have been received and all of them are in the limelight," Astakhov said, adding, "unfortunately, agreements on mutual assistance in handling civil and family disputes have not been signed with all countries."

"Finland has been stubbornly refusing to set an intergovernmental mechanism in motion that would help settle such disputes," he said.

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