Meet against trafficking ends

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, April 1:

The representatives of Southeast Asian countries during the Southeast Asia Conference on Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes, which concluded in Medan, Indonesia recently decided to step up action against child sexual exploitation and trafficking.

In the two-day seminar the participants acknowledged the fact that the underlying causes of child trafficking are complex and interrelated, which included poverty and lack of economic opportunities for young people, low status of girls, demand for commercial sex and cheap labour, weak law enforcement, discrimination and conflict among otherse.

The UNICEF estimates two million girls and boys, including over 70,000 in Indonesia alone, are sexually exploited worldwide every year.

The conference drew about 300 participants from 16 nations and adopted the Medan Declaration which focused on ways to prevent and protect children legally and socially from sexual exploitation and trafficking in the region.

"The Declaration aims at strengthening regional collaboration through, among others, the signing of cross-border agreements between and within countries," said Bijay Sainju, chairperson from Concern for Children and Environment-Nepal (CONCERN-Nepal), who had participated from here.