United States lists China among worst human trafficking offenders

Kristopher Drake
June 28, 2017

The United States downgraded China in its annual report on human trafficking and forced labour, putting the country in the same tier as North Korea and Syria and thus risking a diplomatic backlash from Beijing.

"As we have said repeatedly, no country has the right to speak irresponsibly on China's domestic affairs", Lu told reporters in Beijing. It adds: "The President may determine to withhold funding for government official or employee participation in educational and cultural exchange programs for certain Tier 3 countries".

However, President Donald Trump retains the authority to waive the sanctions in USA national interest.

A country is automatically downgraded to Tier 3 if rated as Tier 2 Watch List (meaning they are making attempts to comply with minimum standards) for two years. In 2016, over 66,000 victims of trafficking were identified by the 2017 U.S. Trafficking in Persons Report, but many more victims than this suffer in silence.

"Responsible nations simply can not allow this to go on and we continue to call on any nation that is hosting workers from North Korea in a forced-labor arrangement to send those people home".

The contradiction was nowhere in evidence on Tuesday, however, as Ivanka declared that 'ending human trafficking is a major foreign policy priority for the Trump administration'.

Other Asian countries are spread across the board with South Korea, the Philippines and Taiwan at the top tier, in line with established standards.

"Official complicity in trafficking crimes remained a serious problem, yet the government did not make efforts to investigate, prosecute, and convict allegedly complicit law enforcement, border, and manpower officials", the State Department report said.

The Tier 3 designation could mean restrictions on certain kinds of foreign aid funding not tied to humanitarian or trade issues, according to the report.


North Korea has imprisoned about 80,000-120,000 of its people in camps in remote areas of the country without judicial prosecutions, convictions or sentencings, the report said.

Being honored by the State Department gave her even more credibility in being the "light and the voice for victims", Mosby said.

Ms. Trump spoke about eight individuals that State who honored Tuesday as part of the unveiling, calling them heroes and sources of inspiration.

"It splinters families, distorts global markets, undermines the rule of law, and spurs other transnational criminal activity", said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in a statement.

Trafficking in persons, considered as modern slavery or human trafficking, includes both sex trafficking and compelled labour.

The "Tier 2 Watch List" includes Thailand and 44 other countries that make significant efforts to bring their actions against human trafficking into compliance with what the United States calls its Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) standards.

Bangladesh, Nicaragua, Madagascar and Guatemala were among other countries downgraded in the report.

Myanmar, heavily criticized in the past for its large numbers of child soldiers, was removed from among the worst offenders to the "Tier 2 Watch List" for its efforts to halt the practice.

Some 45 countries are in the "Tier 2 Watch List" with Bangladesh including Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Pakistan, Thailand, and Hong Kong.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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