A U.S. citizen from Chicago, Illinois is fighting for twin’s citizenship after going to Israel to conceive through in-vitro fertilization. The U.S. State Department is denying the mother’s twin daughters, Maya and Shira, 2-years-old, citizenship because they refuse to recognize her offspring as “American”. Current U.S. policy states that children born through in-vitro in foreign countries must prove that the egg and sperm donors are American citizens. The problem is, the donations were made anonymously, however, U.S. citizens adopting foreign children or non-U.S. citizens who have babies in the U.S. are granted U.S. citizenship. This is something that single mom Ellie Lavi feels is not right.
Lavi, who is in her 40s, says she went to the U.S. Embassy in Israel and was asked how she conceived her children over a loud speaker. She says she left in tears, ashamed and humiliated.
Lavi tried to make her case to MSNBC, “They are my kids, I carried them for nine months, but they can’t be American. U.S. policy is not keeping up with the technology. That’s essentially what the issue is.”
In order to give her children the privilege of U.S. citizenship, the law requires she and her girls move to the U.S., live there for 6 months and officially apply for citizenship, but Lavi doesn’t want to move back to the U.S.. So unless Israel is willing to recognize the girls as Israeli, the twins have no country to call their own at this point.