EU countries are not doing enough to protect children from being exploited by human traffickers, European Parliament member Simon Coveney of
The finding came a week after the head of the children’s unit at the Council of Baltic Sea States said children were increasingly at risk in being exploited in what was called a modern-day slave trade.
Coveney said, “A recent UNICEF report criticised efforts in
Coveney’s report referred to conclusions of the roundtable on EU action against child trafficking and related forms of sexual exploitation, which revealed the seriousness and extent of child trafficking for sexual and economic exploitation (child labour, prostitution, pornography, organ trafficking, drug selling,) as well as for illegal adoption.
“Children are increasingly caught up in the process. Globally, over 5.7 million children work under unacceptable circumstances and an estimated 1.2 million children are victims of trafficking in human beings. At any given time, some 300,000 children are fighting as child soldiers in more than 30 armed conflicts around the world. The EU needs to play a proactive role to speak out against such abuse,” he said.
And, he added, “Children belonging to minorities are particularly vulnerable, because of poor access to education and lack of birth registration. My report encourages all countries including
Coveney, the EPP-ED Group’s spokesman for human rights, also refered to the granting of temporary residence permits for trafficked women in his report, and said he would like to see the Irish Government considering such permits in the context of proposed immigration and anti-trafficking legislation.