The international human traffic network is the third most lucrative in the world, with an annual turnover of US$ 9 billion, trailing only arms and drug trafficking.
According to the Rio de Janeiro State Council on Women’s Rights (Cedim), the greatest victims of this illicit activity are young women, who represent 95% of the total.
Ana Maria Rattes, president of the Cedim, says that, in many instances, the women are seduced by false promises and travel abroad voluntarily, making it more difficult to register the extent of this type of crime.
“We conversed with a woman who told us she was obliged to have 30 sexual relations each night. Their passports are seized and retained by the traffickers. They are exploited like objects,” Rattes observes.
The Cedim is sponsoring a seminar, which ends tomorrow, June 29, to discuss steps to prevent the international trafficking of women and the role of government organs in combating this traffic.
The participants include state and federal government representatives, police commissioners, psychologists, teachers, anthropologists, and ambassadors from European countries, such as Sweden, one of the main destinations of trafficked women, especially from Brazil.
According to Rattes, Brazil has no specific legislation to deal with this question; what exists is the Palermo Protocol, which took effect in September, 2003, but wasn’t promulgated until March of last year.
The protocol was ratified by 94 countries, including Brazil, and is intended to prevent, suppress, and punish human trafficking, especially of women and children.
The Cedim plans to inaugurate an office next month on the premises of the Brazilian Airport Infrastructure Company (Infraero), at the Rio de Janeiro international airport.
The purpose is to orient the young victims of female trafficking and help police identify the traffickers.
ABr – www.radiobras.gov.br
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