A letter was written to the Norwegian Prime Minister, Erna Solberg, by more than 100 attorneys from the United States, abroad, and members of the European Parliament addressing the government’s act of seizing five children from their parents over Christian faith.
“We find the facts of this international incident unacceptable not only on legal grounds but also on humanitarian and moral grounds. We view these transgressions as grievous breaches of domestic and international law … Therefore, it is important that Norway immediately release the children back to their biological parents,” the letter reads.
The letter is signed by more than 100 lawyers and parliamentarians and sent by Peter Costea, a Houston-based lawyer.
The parents of the children, Marius and Ruth Bodnariu, were reported to be “radical” Christians by a teacher.
“We have familiarized ourselves with the facts of the matter and are deeply disturbed that the children’s seizure was motivated by the family’s Christian faith … Barnevernet (Child Protective Services) disapproved of the parenting style of the parents because, it concluded, it was ‘based on the Bible,'” the letter continues.
The five children were unlawfully seized on Nov. 16 and 17 last year by the Norwegian Child Protective Services to prevent them from being “indoctrinated” with Christianity. Local authorities allegedly seized the two sons without documentation and arrested Ruth, while carrying her baby, Ezekiel. Marius was also arrested.
The parents were interrogated for several hours, later on were freed and allowed to go home, but without the other children excluding baby Ezekiel. The following day, authorities went back to the Bodnariu’s home and took Ezekiel into custody with claim that Ruth is “dangerous.”
The family’s appeal of the agency’s decision to remove the children from the home was rejected. On the other hand, the letter mentions that the youngest has been returned to the parents. The parents’ meeting with their children are occasional, based solely on the discretion of the authorities.