Travel.State.Gov > Intercountry Adoption > Country Information > Belarus Intercountry Adoption Information
Reissued with obsolete COVID-19 page links removed.
Do not travel to Belarus due to the Belarusian authorities’ continued facilitation of Russia’s war against Ukraine, the buildup of Russian military forces in Belarus, the arbitrary enforcement of local laws, the potential of civil unrest, the risk of detention, and the Embassy’s limited ability to assist U.S. citizens residing in or traveling to Belarus. U.S. citizens in Belarus should depart immediately.
On February 28, 2022, the Department of State ordered the departure of U.S. government employees and the suspension of operations of the U.S. Embassy in Minsk. All consular services, routine and emergency, are suspended until further notice. U.S. citizens in Belarus who require consular services should try to leave the country as soon as possible and contact a U.S. embassy or consulate in another country.
Due to Belarusian authorities’ continued facilitation of Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine and given the heightened volatility and unpredictable nature of the regional security environment, do not travel to Belarus. Potential harassment targeted specifically at foreigners is also possible.
Exercise increased awareness and vigilance regarding political and military tensions in the region. U.S. citizens are advised to avoid public demonstrations. Authorities have used force to disperse demonstrators, including those peacefully demonstrating. Bystanders, including foreign nationals, may face the possibility of arrest or detention.
U.S. citizens should regularly reevaluate possible departure plans in the event of an emergency. Border crossings with neighboring states are sometimes closed with little notice. Additional closures of crossing points along Belarus’ borders with Lithuania, Poland, Latvia, and Ukraine are possible.
Country Summary: Belarusian authorities have detained tens of thousands of individuals, including U.S. citizens, for alleged affiliations with opposition parties and alleged participation in political demonstrations. U.S. citizens in the vicinity of demonstrations have been arrested. Some have been victims of harassment and/or mistreatment by Belarusian officials. Belarusian authorities have targeted individuals associated with independent and foreign media. On May 23, 2021, Belarusian authorities forced the landing of a commercial aircraft transiting Belarusian airspace in order to arrest an opposition journalist who was a passenger.
Belarus enforces special restrictions on dual U.S.-Belarusian nationals and may refuse to acknowledge dual U.S.-Belarusian nationals’ U.S. citizenship, including denying or delaying U.S. consular assistance to detained dual nationals.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued an Advisory Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM) prohibiting all U.S. air carriers and commercial operators, U.S. airmen and airwomen, and U.S. registered aircraft from operating at all altitudes in the Minsk Flight Information Region (UMMV). For more information, U.S. citizens should consult the Federal Aviation Administration’s Prohibitions, Restrictions and Notices.
Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Belarus.
If you decide to travel to Belarus:
Belarusian children are not being placed with U.S. prospective adoptive families at this time. However, U.S. citizen prospective adoptive parents living in Belarus may be eligible to adopt a child from the United States or from a third country.
Please see our section on Adoptions from the United States for more information on the process for adopting a child from the United States. We urge prospective adoptive parents residing abroad who are considering adoption of a child from the United States to consult with the Belarus Central Authority, the Belarusian National Adoption Center within the Ministry of Education, for its determination as to whether it considers your adoption to be subject to the Convention.
Belarus is a party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Convention). Intercountry adoption processing in Convention countries must be done in accordance with the Convention; the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 (IAA); the IAA’s implementing regulations; and all applicable legislation and regulations of Belarus.
Warning: Do not attempt to adopt a child from a Hague Convention country before USCIS has provisionally approved your Form I-800 petition AND a U.S. consular officer issues the “Article 5/17 Letter” for your adoption case.
Remember: The consular officer will make a final decision about a child’s eligibility for an immigrant visa later in the adoption process.
Adoption Authority of Belarus
Ministry of Education, Belarusian National Adoption Center
National Adoption Center
Platonova Str. 22, 11 th Floor,
Tel: 375 – 17-232-6701, 375-17 284 71 51 or 375-17 331 06 17,
Fax: 375 – 17-231-0617,
U.S. Embassy in Minsk, Belarus
Address: 46 Starovilenskaya St.
Minsk, Belarus 220002
Tel: 375 – 17- 2101283
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
For questions about filing a Form I-800A application or a Form I-800 petition:
USCIS National Benefits Center (NBC)
Tel: 1-877-424-8374 (toll free); 1- 913-275-5480 (local); Fax:1-913-214-5808
For general questions about immigration procedures:
USCIS Contact Center
1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)
You are about to leave travel.state.gov for an external website that is not maintained by the U.S. Department of State.
Links to external websites are provided as a convenience and should not be construed as an endorsement by the U.S. Department of State of the views or products contained therein. If you wish to remain on travel.state.gov, click the "cancel" message.
You are about to visit: