Surrogate babies stranded at a Kyiv hotel owned by the BioTexCom clinic (YouTube screenshot)
Video shows facility with some 50 infants whose foreign parents cannot collect them due to border closures imposed amid the coronavirus pandemic
More than 100 babies born to surrogate mothers have been stranded in Ukraine as their foreign parents cannot collect them due to border closures imposed during the coronavirus pandemic, authorities said on Thursday.
Among the babies are some destined for Israel, the US, UK, Germany, France and many other countries.
Ukraine’s borders were closed in March as a result of the virus outbreak.
“In total, more than 100 children in Ukraine are waiting for their parents in various medical centers,” Ukraine’s Ombudsman Lyudmila Denisova told reporters.
That number will grow the longer the lockdown is extended, she said.
Denisova said that 51 newborns were being housed at a Kyiv hotel owned by one of the clinics in the capital. Fifteen of those 51 babies were with their parents while the other 36 were in the care of clinic staff.
BioTexCom, the facility in question, released a video showing dozens of newborns lying side by side in separate cots and being cared for by employees.
Denisova said the clinic appealed to Ukraine’s foreign ministry to facilitate the arrival of babies’ parents but the issue has not yet been resolved.
She criticized the “massive and systemic” surrogacy industry that pushed babies as products and spoke of the possible need for legislation to limit such practices.
Commercial surrogacy is illegal in most European countries but permitted in Ukraine.
One of the poorest European countries, post-Soviet Ukraine is an increasingly popular destination for foreigners looking for surrogate mothers.