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Conflicts, inequalities responsible for human trafficking, says UN

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UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres / AFP PHOTO / Thomas KIENZLE

Conflicts, instabilities and inequalities are responsible for human trafficking across the globe.

Secretary General of the United Nations (UN), Antonio Guterres, disclosed this in Abuja.

In a statement to mark the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, he said children and young people are more susceptible to human trafficking.

He added that migrants and refugees are also included in the profit-induced illegal trade.

He said: “Trafficking in persons is a vile crime that feeds on inequalities, instability and conflicts,” he said.

According to him, human traffickers profit from peoples’ hopes and despair, adding that traffickers across the globe prey on the vulnerable and rob them of their fundamental rights.

The secretary general explained that in sustaining inequalities, instability and conflicts, women and girls are continually targeted in the massive human trafficking.

On loss of fundamental rights, Guterres said: “We see brutal sexual exploitation, including involuntary prostitution, forced marriage and sexual slavery. We see the appalling trade in human organs.

“Human trafficking takes many forms and knows no borders. Human traffickers too often, operate with impunity, with their crimes receiving not nearly enough attention.”

This, according to him, must change, adding that the UN was committed to advancing action to bring traffickers to justice, while protecting and supporting their victims.

“The rights of victims must come first, be they the victims of traffickers, smugglers, or of modern forms of slavery and exploitation.

“Let us come together around the key issues of prevention, protection and prosecution to build a future where this crime cannot exist,” he said.

The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) had revealed that 359 human traffickers have so far been convicted in Nigeria.

He said 3,500 persons had also been rescued from Libya since the 2003.


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