Fourteen-year-old student of boarding school № 13 in Russia’s Chelyabinsk, Maxim Kargopoltsev, appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin with a request to allow an American family to adopt him. However, it turned out one day later that there was no letter from the boy at all. It was revealed that the whole story was an action conducted by a web portal. Representatives of the portal addressed to the principal of the boarding school in December 2012 to make a video address to the Russian president on behalf of students to mitigate the “law of Dima Yakovlev”.
News reports about the letter to President at first appeared on Chelyabinsk-based websites. Afterwards, they were picked up by federal publications. It’s clear why: “the law of Dima Yakovlev” came into force ten days ago, and then there is such a story of an orphan boy with a genetic disease asking the president to let him go to a foster family in America.
Margarita Pavlova, the Commissioner for Human Rights in the Chelyabinsk region, said that there was a chance for the child to cure his genetic disease in America. The official also said that adoptive parents could give the boy good education.
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A day later, Maxim Kargopoltsev said that he had not written any letter to Putin. According to him, he does communicate with an American family that assists him. The boy also said that he had not asked either the president or deputies of anything.
The principal of boarding school № 13, Denis Matsko, also rejected the information about the letter. He confirmed, though, that Maxim was in contact with an American family that tried to adopt him.
According to the principal, in December he was approached by people representing a web portal with a proposal to record a video message to the president on behalf of a school student to mitigate “the law of Dima Yakovlev” and allow him to move to the United States. The school principal rejected the offer. However, it appeared that the idea has not been buried. As long as the video message has not materialized, they proceeded with the letter that the student allegedly wrote. Denis Matsko refused to unveil the name of the web portal.
It is worthy of note that the role of Maxim is not entirely clear in this story. He denies the fact that he wrote the letter, although the day before he posted links to news stories about the letter on his personal page.
Furthermore, Denis Matsko denied information about Maxim’s genetic disease in an interview with Business FM radio station. According to him, the American family communicates with the boy and applied for his adoption indeed. However, he added, they were communicating with the boy privately, without assistance from adoption agencies. Due to irregular documentation, the application for adoption was rejected in November of 2012, before the “Law of Dima Yakovlev” was passed.
Russian MP Ekaterina Lakhova (one of the initiators of the amendment, which prohibits the adoption of Russian children by Americans) called the letter from the Russian boy a provocation. According to her, the child could hardly do all that without adults’ help.
Could the14-year-old student of the Chelyabinsk boarding school write such a letter? One can give an affirmative answer to this question. One can also support the opinion of Ekaterina Lakhova, who believes that someone helped the boy. “A Russian orphan asks the President to let him go to America.” What a marvelous topic for anti-Russian propaganda campaigns …