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News > World

UN: 'Poisonous Anti-migration Political Atmosphere' Must End

  • Graffiti shows a girl in chains with a caption

    Graffiti shows a girl in chains with a caption "Human trafficking is the new way of exploiting people for money" | Photo: Reuters

Published 31 July 2018

“Trafficking in persons is a vile crime that feeds on inequalities, instability and conflict,” U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said

Human Trafficking is the third most lucrative business in organized crime after drug and arms trafficking according to a recently released titled the Global Report on Trafficking In Persons. According to the report the multi-billion dollar industry mainly exploits women and children but not exclusively for labor and sexual exploitation.

Human Trafficking Hits Record High in

Women and children represent almost 80 percent of the victims of human trafficking; while, 63 percent of the persons convicted of the crime of trafficking are men according to the United Nations-funded report.

The U.N. has called upon governments to step up and protect their most vulnerable citizens since "trafficking in persons is a vile crime that feeds on inequalities, instability, and conflict,” United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement for the World Day against human trafficking on July 30th.

Victims of human trafficking, mainly children "urgently need governments to step up and put measures in place to keep them safe," Executive Director of UNICEF, Henrietta Fore, said. Because traffickers “profit from peoples’ hopes and despair,” Guterres remarked. 

The U.N. has called on countries to improve living conditions and human rights insurance, as one of the more feasible ways to fight against human trafficking

Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons Maria Grazzia Gianmarinaro, in a statement marking the day, explained that there is a  “poisonous anti-migration political atmosphere,” that violates migrants rights and makes them more vulnerable to human trafficking. 

“Taking a stand against xenophobic and racist approaches, as well as violence, hatred, and discrimination is a moral duty which is in everyone’s power,” Gianmarinaro highlighted.

Policies such as the "zero-tolerance" against undocumented immigrants and others proposed by the US Trump administration are very harmful in this matter.

“In many countries, human rights activists and civil society organizations have been criminalized and ostracized for acting in solidarity with migrants and victims, and potential victims of trafficking,” said Gianmarinaro.

“On World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, my message is that, even in difficult times, inclusion, not exclusion, is the answer,” Gianmarinaro concluded.


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