One by One, These Newborn Sisters Were Abandoned Near Berlin -NYT

By Christopher F. Schuetze and Palko Karasz

BERLIN — DNA tests on three girls born between 2015 and last year and found abandoned on the outskirts of Berlin showed that they were sisters, the authorities confirmed on Tuesday.

The police in Berlin are now appealing for information about the mother of Emma, Lilo and Hanna, who were all abandoned just hours after they were born around the city’s Pankow neighborhood. Police named the girls, who are now in foster care, local media reported.

“It’s certainly the same mother,” said Michael Maass of the Berlin Police. “And we are going on the assumption that it is probably the same father.”

All three girls, who were born about a year apart, were found around the Helios Clinic in Berlin-Buch, some 15 miles northeast of the capital’s center. But the way the umbilical cords were cut indicated that the births had not taken place in a hospital. The babies were probably delivered without medical help, according to police experts.

While the police are searching for the person responsible for abandoning the children and endangering their lives, they have made clear that the mother might be a victim herself.

“They are all girls — maybe it was supposed to be a boy,” a Berlin police official, Uta Rösel, told RBB, the regional broadcaster. “Maybe the mother is in some kind of dependent relationship in which she is also being mistreated.”

At least five hospitals in Berlin offer places where mothers can leave unwanted newborns anonymously so they can receive immediate medical attention. The hospital in Buch is not one of them. But women in the city who want to give birth in a medical facility but not leave an official record of the birth can do so anonymously.

The police gave scant information on the condition of the infants when they were found. In the first instance, the authorities published images of sullied baby clothes worn by the newborn, who was found lying on a pillow in a bus stop.

Christopher F. Schuetze reported from Berlin, and Palko Karasz from London.

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