Britain said on Wednesday there had been an upsurge in the number of British children abducted by their parents and taken abroad, with Pakistan, Thailand and India the most common destinations.
The Foreign Office said that 161 children were taken over the past 12 months to countries that are outside an international treaty designed to ensure the return of wrongfully removed minors.
This compares to 146 in 2009/10 and 105 in 2008/9, said the foreign ministry. It added that the true figures are likely to be much higher as many cases go unreported.
“We are very concerned that we continue to see an increase in the number of cases of international parental child abduction,” said Foreign Office minister Jeremy Browne.
“The latest figures suggest the problem affects people from all walks of life and not just certain types of families or particular countries,” he added.
Mothers are more likely to be responsible, the figures showed.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 30th, 2011.