“I have decided to suspend all adoption from Nigeria with immediate effect,” Denmark’s minister for children tweeted. “We must do everything we can to protect the children and to give the families peace of mind,” he said in a separate statement.
The minister, Manu Sareen, said he had taken the decision after the Danish regulator, the National Social Appeals Board, said it was “no longer justifiable to adopt children from the country”. The board said it was difficult to ensure a lawful and ethical adoption process from Nigeria, but added that couples who had been matched with a child would not be affected by the ban.
Further information was required from the organization that helps Danish couples adopt from Nigeria, AC International Child Support, before making a permanent decision, it added.
In March, Nigerian police arrested several people, including eight pregnant women, during a raid on a house in Lagos. The women planned to sell their newborns for $2,000 (£1,200) each, reports suggest.
There have been several raids on supposed Nigerian baby factories since 2011, with more than 100 women discovered during such operations. Investigations by Nigeria’s anti-trafficking agency that year revealed that babies were being sold for up to $6,400 each. Buyers tend to be couples who are unable to conceive, and boys typically fetch a much higher price than girls.