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Spain's baby-theft victims want full inquiry

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Spain's baby-theft victims want full inquiry


In Spain, a movement for answers over an alleged Franco-era baby-stealing policy is gaining momentum.

Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets across the country to call for a full investigation into the disappearance of newborns.

A former government decree allowed the state to take children into custody if their so-called “moral education” was at risk.

The policy ended in 1980, but questions over their whereabouts remain. One woman who lost twins said: “We filed a suit with all the papers that we could find, but we couldn’t get anything from the civil register, nor from the maternity. They didn’t give us anything.”

More than a thousand cases of newborn babies reportedly taken have been filed in the past year, but campaigners say most have been shelved.

Now David Serra, the lawyer for one of the victims groups wants a parliamentary inquiry as well as a legal investigation into their fate.

Citizen’s groups fighting for the families believe as many as 300,000 children may have been taken from jailed left-wing opponents to Franco. Many adopted by Catholic religious orders or ideologically approved families to purge Spain of so-called Marxist influences.

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