Yamila's Cause [started 20 October 2003]

Yamila's daughter, Emiri, was kidnapped from Cuba by her Japanese husband. Do not jump to conclusions just yet! He only married her after the baby was already over a year old, thus gaining rights over the child under Japanese law. His intentions were not clear to Yamila. Somehow he managed to convince the Cuban officials that the mother had kidnapped the child (although she had a letter of permission signed by him to travel with the child) and with the help of the police, the child was physically torn from its maternal grandma's arms.

Upon return to Tokyo he forged his wife's signature on divorce papers at the ward office. After finally raising enough money for a flight to Tokyo, Yamila is here struggling to receive justice from Japanese Family Court. There is a growing team trying to find a solution to her visa status (so that she can be physically present at court) and supporting her with funds. Read more! (in English, Spanish and Japanese)

This has the potential to be a landmark case in Japan's notorious non-acceptance of all international standards regarding child abduction, joint custody, visitation, and children's rights. But more importantly, each of us together as a group might make a difference in the life of this woman who may as well have had her heart ripped from her chest!

This web page was removed from the web from 12 December 2003 to 26 January 2004, in compliance with a request from Yamila personally. This was part of a negotiation at Family Court where her husband demanded that she take down all internet references in exchange for the opportunity to see her daughter. The visit was scheduled on 22 December. The fierce bargaining resulted in a visit of merely 30 minutes. Thus Yamila has met her daughter a total of 2 times since the kidnapping, in other words, two times in one year for a total of one hour and a half. Prior to the kidnapping the child was energetic, confident in herself and in her mother. Now the child is quiet, reticent, afraid of repercussions for accidents, and possibly confused as to the identity of her own mother.

[Spanish] Esta pagina web fue quitada de la red desde el 12 de diciembre de 2003 al 26 de enero de 2004, en conformidad con una petición personal de Yamila. Éste era parte de una negociación en la corte de la familia donde su marido exigiE que ella debia retirar todas la informacion y referencias del Internet a cambio de poderla ver a su hija. La visita fue programada para el 22 de diciembre del 2003. Este intercambio dio lugar a una visita de solo 30 minutos. AsEYamila ha podido ver su hija solamente 2 veces desde el secuestro, osea, dos veces en un ano, estos encuentros han sido en total de una hora y media. Antes del secuestro la niña era enérgica, confianda en si misma y en su mama. Ahora la nina es introvertida, callada, reacciona asustada, y posiblemente esta confundida sobre la identidad de su madre.

More in the Media

This is not a complete list and some articles are not available via web.
2003 Aug 11 (in English & in Spanish) Chilean consulate follows the case of Yamila by Pablo Lores Kanto
2003 Oct 24 (in English & in Spanish) Chilean fights to obtain the safekeeping of her daughter by Pablo Lores Kanto
2003 November (in English) http://www.zmag.org/Japanwatch/0303-kidnap.html by Jens Wilkinson for JapanWatch
2004 Sep 8 (in Spanish) http://www.chile.com/tpl/articulo/detalle
by Carlos Pino Villalobos
2004 Dec 7 (in Spanish) http://teletrece.canal13.cl/html/
Chilean Television Chanel 13 report with video
2004 Dec 17 (in Spanish) http://teletrece.canal13.cl/html/
Chilean Television Chanel 13 report with video
2004 Dec 20 (in Spanish) http://teletrece.canal13.cl/html/
Chilean Television Chanel 13 report with video
2006 Jan 27 (in English) http://metropolis.japantoday.com/
by Kevin Buckland
2006 March 31 (in Spanish) http://www.cosas.com/
by Catalina Plaza (contains photograph of Yamila, the Japanese father and Emire)

Symposium: Children's and Parental Rights in Japan:
How Japan Supports International Abduction and Discriminates Against Foreign Parents

Date: December 6, December 2003, 14:00 - 17:00
Location: near Tokyo Station Yaesu exit.
for details email: c[at]tokyowithkids.com
Co-sponsored by JapanWithKids, Children's Rights Council Japan, and United for a Multicultural Japan.

Hague Convention & International Child Abduction Seminar
December 3, 2005 Hosted by the Canadian Embassy from 13:00 to 18:00

Donations Received for Yamila: (Donations can be made through JapanWithKids, through CRC Japan and directly into her Postal Savings account.)
Y15,000 from C.K.27 October 2003
Y 5,000 from L.S. 7 November 2003
Y 5,000 from M.M. 14 November 2003
Y 5,000 from C.K. 17 November 2003
Y 5,000 from C.K. 28 November 2003
Y 1,000 from M.H. 30 November 2003
Y 8,000 from P.A. 6 December 2003
Y 2,000 in phone cards from Insite survey (B. and A.) 8 December 2003
Y 8,000 from S.C. 9 December 2003
Y 5,000 from M.M. 12 December 2003
Y10,000 in phone cards from Insite survey 15 December 2003
Y 5,000 from C.K. 10 January 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 1 February 2004
Y 3,000 from M.M. 16 February 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 1 March 2004
Y 5,000 from Tobias 1 March 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 7 April 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 26 April 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 30 May 2004
Y 3,000 from M.M. 8 June 2004
Y22,000 from C.K. 21 June 2004
Y 5,000 from Ken 28 June 2004
Y20,000 from James G. 8 June 2005
Y 2,000 from Gavin 3 December 2005
Y 2,000 from Ian 3 December 2005
Y30,000 from C.K. 3 April 2006
Y20,000 from L.S. 3 April 2006
A few donations are not listed as per the request of the giver.

Related Links:
Japan With Kids Discussion Forums - Marriage/Divorce in Japan
Children's Rights Network Japan - the most exhaustive resource on the Japanese Family Court mediation system to date. Includes lawyer names, an E-list for parents, article archive, PDF files of relavant Japanese documents and much more.
FathersWebSite - begun by Japanese fathers finding themselves shut out by their children's mothers, but mothers and foreign parents are most welcome.
Separated Children's Support
Internal pressure in Japan building up, this site is new (June 2007). Working on class action suite to get family law in Japan changed to include joint custody option and to include parental rights for fathers of children born out of wedlock.
Separated Children's Support Class Action Suit in Japanese.
The International Rights of Children Society - Mr. Murray Wood is a teacher in Vancouver British Columbia. In December 2004, his two children were taken from Canada by his ex-wife in violation of a custody order issued by the British Columbia Supreme Court. Mr. Wood has attempted to obtain custody of his children by working through the Japanese court system, and his case is currently before the Japanese Supreme Court. He and people close to him have started The International Rights of Children Society
Fathers' Rights in Japan - Sign the petition. Goal is to encourage the creation of new laws that allow children living in Japan regular access to both parents.
Missing Children in Japan Photo Album - This seems to be an independent harvesting photos from various web pages and news stories for this photo album.
Oyakonet - organized to lobby for enforceable visitation. Japanese only.
JFC Network: This organization helps Filippina mothers find the Japanese fathers of their children. Hours & days 10:00-18:00, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Tel/fax: 050-3328-0143. E-mail jfcnet [at] jca.apc.org; Languages Japanese, English and Tagalog
United for a Multicultural Japan (UMJ) - this organization is dedicated to fighting discrimination and racism in Japan.

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