Capture d’écran 2015-10-22 à 15.54.383,000 to 3,500 unaccompanied foreign minors (UFM) entered the Belgian territory in 2015. In 2014, they were 1,700. An estimate given during the press conference of the Platform Minors in exile on the 21th of October. “The UFM tend to be younger and younger” explained Katja Fournier, coordinator of the Platform Minors in exile. These children, coming mainly from Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Somalia, are often exploited and tortured along their road to Europe. However, on the 9th of October, only 16 places remained in Fedasil reception centers. The Platform estimates that 120 to 150 new places by month are needed by the end of 2015 to take care of these children. The need for political actions is urgent, regarding the risk of exposing these children to new exploitations: forced labour, mendacity, prostitution, etc.

Copyright ECPAT Belgique « Stop à l’exploitation sexuelle commerciale des enfants »

Eurostat published the 2015 edition of the report on statistics on human trafficking in the European Union, covering the period 2010-2012. Where do the identified victims of trafficking come from? And the traffickers? What form of exploitation are the most common? 19% of identified victims are children. 55% of identified victims are under 24 and 69% are sexually exploited. Belgium is no exception, being in the top five of the EU countries where the traffickers come from.

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These figures show the urgent need of better protection for children against trafficking. At the occasion of the EU Anti-trafficking day (18th of October), the Council of Europe recalled that governments must act to prevent and combat child trafficking.

Copyright ECPAT Belgique « Stop à l’exploitation sexuelle commerciale des enfants »

imgresThe UN General Assembly officially designated July 30 as the first ever World Day against Trafficking in Persons. This day is meant to raise awareness, improve coordination, and promote the rights of victims of human trafficking. Trafficking in persons is defined as the act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, or harbouring a person through the use of force, fraud, or coercion, with the intent to exploit. Individuals may be trafficked for purposes such as forced labour or commercial sex. The UN also urges countries to ratify and implement the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocol on Trafficking in Persons.

ECPAT Belgium supports the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons and advocates for the millions of individuals who are affected. This form of modern day slavery is an extreme violation of human rights. ECPAT Belgium specifically works to support the rights of the child and those affected by child prostitution, child sex tourism, child pornography, and child trafficking. It is important to recognize that children are particularly vulnerable to exploitation, especially those that are homeless or come from abusive backgrounds. UNICEF estimates that approximately 2 million children worldwide are exploited through commercial sex. The consequences of this crime are extremely severe and devastating. By taking measures to increase public awareness, collaborate with authorities, and strengthen legislation to promote the rights of the child, commercial sexual exploitation against children can end.


Copyright ECPAT Belgique « Stop à l’exploitation sexuelle commerciale des enfants »