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US government rejects sanctions against Japan over child abduction cases

The US government has rejected calls from child abduction campaigners to threaten sanctions against Japan.

According to a report in the Japan Times, ‘hundreds’ of American children have been abducted from the United States into Japan by alienated parents – more than any other country.

Susan S Jacobs, the US government’s official  Special Advisor for International Children’s Issues, told Congress that sanctions were a “two-edged sword”.

“I think threatening countries is often an unsuccessful way to get them to cooperate with us because most of the relationships that we have are very complex and involve many issues. The return of these children is incredibly important to us and we pledge to work to do the best we can to get these children returned. But I don’t think that we’re going to sanction Japan, or threaten them with sanctions, because I think that would be detrimental to our bilateral relationship.”

The Japanese government has announced plans to sign international treaty the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, but the resulting new legal obligations would not apply retrospectively.

Last month the Japanese government announced a scheme that would supply advice on the Japanese legal system to foreign parents involved in child abduction cases.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. Tim Johnston says:

    The U.S. Government should put sanctions on Japan for not adhering to the rights of U.S. Parents who have children born on Japanese soil and vice versa.

    Japans Parental rights for the Japanese people and Foreigners is absolutely appalling. The Government needs to get with the times and respect Human rights, Childrens rights, parents rights and international law.

    Just because in Japanese society the mother takes full custody of the child and controls the access and visitation rights, doesn’t mean the Father and Child aren’t suffering form alienation abuse and one sidedness, because of a completely unfair legal system and a government which has proven to be scandalous and incompetent.

    This is an atrocious violation of international rights. As a foreigner living in Japan, Who doesn’t have the right to contact his only child on his Birthday, Christmas or even meet or have a meal with him

    Get with the times Japan!! foreigners are different and we Love to see our children regardless of what a robotical Govt. tries to impose on us.
    NELSON MANDELA passed away today (R.I.P.) , so out of respect, One of his famous quotes.


    Tim Johnston japan
    Kai Endo Japan

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