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DNA test confirms blonde Maria is the daughter of Bulgarian Roma couple

..and there was light! The DNA-test confirmed that little blonde Maria is the biological daughter of Sasha Ruseva and her husband Atana Rusev, a Roma couple living in Nikoloevo in Bulgaria. The test result was announced on Friday afternoon, a week after the girl was removed by local police from a Roma camp in Farsala, Greece on a tip-off.

The girl was living in a home with its what it now seems adoptive parents, Eleftheria Dimopoulou and Christos Salis. The tip-off to police had claimed that the little blond girl was not a Roma child.

maria mother

Sasha Ruseva                     Maria

The DNA result announcement prompted the lawyer of the Greek Roma couple to demand the immediate release of her clients and the dropping of charges for “child abduction”. The couple remanded custody last week when the DNA test confirmed that they were not the parents of Maria.

From the very beginning Dimopoulou and Salis had insisted that they were not child-abductors but that they had adopted the child by another Roma woman, even if the adoption was not official -according to the laws of the Greek state.

In Nikoloevo, Sasha Ruseva told reporters on Thursday, that she had given birth to a girl end of January 2009 in Greece and that she handed over the newborn to a Roma couple because she could afford to raise her. Ruseva claimed that she had not received money to hand over her new born.

Sasha Ruseva and Atana Rusev live in a Roma camp in the outskirts of Nikoloevo with their nine children. Three of them are blonde and two red-haired. To reporters’ question how comes some of her children were blonde, dark-skinned and dark-haired Ruseva had replied, that the father, Atana, had in his family line “albino” (Albinism is a genetical modification characherized by the complte or partial absence of melanin.)

Maria’s age

Maria’s adoptive parents had told Greek police, that the girl was four years old, an infomration confirmed also by Sasha Ruseva and birth registration in Lamia hospital, not very far from the Roma camp in Farsala, as news website exposed two days ago.

But the charity “Smile of the Child” had said medical examinations suggested she was more like five or six,”the BBC notes today.

What now?

Sasha Ruseva told local and international media yesterday that if Maria was her daughter she wanted her back.

Bulgarian authorities let the press know, that they could ask the Greek state to hand over Maria where she could be put in an orphanage and set free for adoption due to the poverty of Marias’ biological parents.

It is currently considered as certain, that she will not be given back to her adoptive parents in Farsala.

I cannot tell right now, but theoretically Maria is a Greek citizen as she was registered here by her adoptive parents, who had also issued a documentation number in her name and they were receiving child benefits.

The issue seems very complicated in legal terms and it will surely take time to cut the knot.


So it seems that the whole story that made headlines worldwide, that the defamation, the humiliation, the forceful removal of the child from her adoptive parents, the racial reporting, the exposure of authorities and other people involved that heralded the big catch and the revived hopes of dozens parents’ of missing children in Europe and America… that the whole turmoil was all based on a simple absence of melanin in the genes of the family.

Interesting to note that when the (Greek) media discovered Sasha Ruseva, “blond angel Maria” became just “Little Maria”. After the DNA-test result became known,  political correct Roma was replaced with often offensive Gypsy. 

PS What we learn from the story? That Everything is Relative. And that “the blonde” in one race can be “the albino” in the other. No offense.

read also: Little Maria: not a “blonde angel” but an “albino gypsy”?


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  1. .. she could be put in an orphanage due to the poverty of Marias’ biological parents??? Where will this poor family end up? What about helping them? Extreme poverty is the real issue here.

    • Has no-one interviewed the child? If she is happy with her adoptive parents, then, as Jacoline says, the issue is helping the parents and child, and just legalising the adoption. I think they have been punished enough by recent events re not adopting officially.
      What next? – Will authorities start taking children away from other poor parents?
      Talk to Maria – even at her age it will be obvious if she is happy or not with the man and woman who have brought her up so far. No abuse by the adoptive parents has been suggested.

      • based on what charity chairman told Enetenglish (sorry, for no link) an interpreter was only whne the girl was taken to hospital. no other communication with her, it seems.

  2. costa sakellariou

    so there was no kidnapping…no child smuggling gang…no child sex ring.

    just gypsies and their anarchic way of doing things – too bad KTG also had adopted the rather paranoid sounding tones of the mainstream press…

    • yes, in the heat of the breaking news I did adopted as well based on what police was leaking to the press and what the charity chairman was saying to the media, while keeping in mind there might be interested parents of missing children who have a right to know.
      Therefore I did my self-criticism in another post.

      I wish you had come out with your arguments BEFORE the DNA test result.