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Number Of Foreign Adoptions By U.S. Citizens Reaches 20-Year Low

Orphaned children with disabilities in Russia's Ivanovo region
The U.S. State Department has released figures showing that the number of international adoptions by U.S. citizens fell last year to its lowest level since 1994.

The government reported that U.S. citizens adopted 8,668 foreign children during the 2012 fiscal year, down from 9,320 in 2011.

The largest number of children (2,589) were from China, followed by Ethiopia (1,568), and Russia (748).

Russia recently banned the adoption of Russian children by U.S. citizens in retaliation for a U.S. law imposing sanctions on Russian officials found to be involved in human rights abuses.

The State Department also reported that 99 U.S. children were adopted by foreign citizens in 2012 -- 41 of them went to Canada and 28 to the Netherlands.

Based on reporting by AP and ITAR-TASS