Tony Rock Chris Wanted African Girl to Have Better Life

11/28/2015 6:56 AM PST

Tony Rock -- Chris Wanted African Girl to Have a Better Life

EXCLUSIVE

Chris Rock's brother Tony says Chris wanted the 7-year-old African girl -- at the center of an international controversy -- to become part of his family to give her a better life.

Tony was leaving LAX Friday when he told our photog he considers Ntombi a part of the family.

As we reported, the Rock family brought Ntombi to the U.S. in 2008, when she was just 6 months old. She lived with the family for 7 years, but Chris hasn't seen the child for a year, since he and estranged wife Malaak filed for divorce.  Chris says he doesn't know how Malaak got Ntombi into the U.S.

Malaak's lawyer is saying his client is now trying to adopt the girl on the fast track.  It's still unclear how she got here in the first place.