Russia to ban Russian women from being surrogates for foreigners

About 45,000 babies born by surrogate Russian mothers have been taken abroad in the past few years, lawmaker says.

Russia will soon adopt a law barring foreigners from contracting Russian women to be surrogate mothers for them.

Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the lower house of Russia’s parliament, made the announcement on Sunday, the nation’s Mother’s Day.

Paid surrogacy is legal in Russia, but the practice has been criticised by religious groups as commercialising the birth of children.

“Everything must be done to protect children by prohibiting foreigners from using the surrogacy service,” Volodin said on the Telegram messaging app. “We will make this decision at the beginning of December.”

He said about 45,000 babies born by surrogate mothers have been taken abroad in the past few years. “Child trafficking is unacceptable,” he added.

Russian lawmakers passed the bill nearly unanimously in its first reading in May.

If passed in the final, third, reading, it will be reviewed by the upper house of parliament and signed into law by President Vladimir Putin.

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