Kids taken by Norway government still not returned to Christian parents despite reports

The four children of Marius and Ruth Bodnariu taken in November by Barnevernet, Norway's child welfare service, have not yet been returned despite reports that say otherwise. An official statement posted on bodnariufamily.org, translated via Google Translate, says that there is no indication that the family will be reunited before July.

Some 200 people gather in central Oslo on April 16, 2016 to protest the state seizure of the five children of Christian couple Marius and Ruth Bodnariu by the Norwegian child welfare service Barnevernet. | Reuters

Also, a post on the Norway Return the children to Bodnariu Family account reads: "PLEASE pay attention to any misleading information or interpretations by any media channel."

This came after a Romanian news outlet reported that the family will be reunited "very soon."

"Even though we would love for that to happen, this is NOT legitimate and has no evidence behind it," the post further states. "We would like to remind you all that any official news regarding Bodnariu Family will first come from the official Facebook page."

The statement also says that while the family appreciates the attention due to sustained media campaign, it also says that there is a need to avoid exaggerations as well as information taken or delivered out of context.

The couple's five children were taken away from them late last year because one of the daughters reportedly told her school's head teacher that her parents spanked her and her siblings for discipline. Corporal punishment is illegal in Norway, and the couple was thus suspected to child abuse as well as indoctrinating the kids with Christianity. On April 6, a judge ruled that the baby, who was only three months old when the Barnevernet took him from his parents, be returned. The two girls and two boys have yet to be allowed to return home.

The Norwegian government has received a lot of criticism and opposition from all over the world, with thousands marching in streets in different countries on April 16 and demanding that they return the children to their parents.