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Russian Prosecutors Probing U.S. Death Of Adopted Girl

9 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Russian officials said today prosecutors in Siberia are investigating the adoption of a 2-year-old girl whose U.S. foster mother was charged with her death earlier this month.

The Prosecutor-General's Office in the child's home region of Irkutsk Oblast says investigators are exploring whether the adoption of the toddler complied with Russian law.

The child, named Nina, died on 2 July of what doctors said was one or more blows to the abdominal area. Her adoptive mother was arrested on 6 July in the U.S. state of Virginia and charged with murder.

About 5,000 Russian children are adopted each year by American families.

Russian authorities last month stripped three U.S.-based adoption agencies of their accreditation, saying they had failed to monitor the well being of adopted children in their new homes.