NEWS: CSCE NEWS RELEASE

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Subject: NEWS: CSCE NEWS RELEASE
From: Jyothi Kanics (jkanics@igc.org)
Date: Thu Jun 24 1999 - 08:11:06 EDT


> CSCE NEWS RELEASE
> Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe
> 234 Ford House Office Building
> Washington, D.C. 20515-6460
> (202) 225-1901
> www.house.gov/csce/
> Rep. Christopher H. Smith, Chairman
> Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Co-Chairman
> Contact: Chadwick R. Gore
> Chadwick.Gore@mail.house.gov
>
> Hearing Announced: "The Sex Trade:
> Trafficking of Women and Children in Europe
> and the United States"
>
> For Immediate Release
> June 22, 1999
> Contact: Chadwick R. Gore
> (202) 225-1901
>
> Washington, DC- Today the Commission on Security and Cooperation in
> Europe announced the forthcoming hearing:
>
> The Sex Trade: Trafficking of Women and Children in Europe and the
United
> States
> Monday, June 28
> 2-4:30 PM
> Room 2226 Rayburn House Office Building
> Capitol Hill
> Washington, DC
> Open to Members, Staff, the Public and Press
>
> Witnesses:
>
> Steven Galster, Executive Director of Global Survival Network, a
> DC-based human rights group that conducted a two-year study of
trafficking
> in women from the former USSR.
>
> Dr. Louise Shelley, a Professor in the Department of Justice, Law
> and Society and the School of International Service at American
University
> and founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Transnational
> Crime and Corruption at the university.
>
> Laura Lederer, Research Director and Project Manager of the
> Protection Project, a part of the Women and Public Policy Program at
the
> John F. Kennedy School of Government. She will give an overview of the
> existing laws in OSCE countries addressing trafficking.
>
> A U.S. Department of State witness for International Women's Issues
> has been invited.
>
> A representative from the refugee resettlement community has been
> invited to discuss trafficking in Kosovar refugee camps.
>
> Objective: The hearing will address the underlying causes of
> trafficking and describe the extent of the problem in OSCE
participating
> States, including in conflict settings such as Kosovo. Witnesses will
also
> describe the involvement of international criminal networks and the
> efforts underway by the U.S. Government, foreign governments, and NGOs
to
> address the issue.
>
> Background: Trafficking in human beings is commonly described as
> a form of modern day slavery. Trafficking for purposes of forced
> prostitution, particularly of women and children, involves deception,
> violence and exploitation of human beings. While trafficking has long
> been a problem in Asian countries, the end of communism in East-Central
> Europe and the breakup of the Soviet Union have led to a rapidly
> developing sex trade in the OSCE region-linked to national and
> international crime networks. Suffering from extreme poverty and a
lack
> of economic opportunities, women in these post-communist countries are
> easy prey for sophisticated traffickers who promise the women good jobs
in
> foreign countries. Having succumbed to such criminals, women find
> themselves held in foreign countries as virtual prisoners who are
forced
> to prostitute themselves or suffer violent consequences.
>
> In 1991, the OSCE participating States adopted language that calls
> for States to "seek to eliminate all forms of violence against women,
and
> all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of prostitution of women
> including by ensuring adequate legal prohibitions against such acts and
> other appropriate measures." Despite this commitment, the State
> Department estimates that, in 1997 alone, 100,000 women were trafficked
> from the former Soviet Union. The United States is one of the primary
> destination points for trafficked women from this region. In addition,
not
> all countries in the OSCE region yet have sufficient legislative or
> enforcement mechanisms to identify, apprehend and punish traffickers.
>
>
> -30-
> Chadwick R. Gore
> Communications Director
> U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe
> 234 Ford House Office Building
> Washington, DC 20515-6064
> Chadwick.Gore@mail.house.gov
> www.house.gov/csce/
> (202) 225-1901; fax (202) 225-4394
>


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