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HomeAsian NewsUS Provides Vietnam, Cambodia, Brunei to Human Trafficking Blacklist – The Diplomat

US Provides Vietnam, Cambodia, Brunei to Human Trafficking Blacklist – The Diplomat


US Adds Vietnam, Cambodia, Brunei to Human Trafficking Blacklist

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken launches the 2022 Trafficking in Individuals Report in Washington, D.C., July 19, 2022.

Credit score: Twitter/Secretary Antony Blinken

Human trafficking worsened significantly in Southeast Asia in 2021, with the US authorities including Vietnam, Cambodia, and Brunei to its trafficking in individuals blacklist and downgrading Indonesia.

On this yr’s Trafficking in Individuals (TIP)  report, launched on Tuesday, the U.S. State Division scrutinized 188 nations’ efforts to halt human trafficking and punish these accountable.

The report kinds nations into three tiers, with its lowest grade – Tier 3 – reserved for “nations whose governments don’t absolutely meet the minimal [anti-trafficking] requirements and don’t make vital efforts to take action.”

On this yr’s report, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Brunei had been each dropped right down to Tier 3, whereas Indonesia was lowered from Tier 2 to the Tier 2 watchlist. Tier 3 standing opens nations to a spread of potential sanctions and penalties, although Washington usually waives sanctions for shut companions and different nations that promise to take swift remedial motion.

These three nations joined their Southeast Asian neighbors Malaysia and Myanmar on the Tier 3 blacklist, bringing the variety of Southeast Asian nations on this class to 5 out of 11 – a outstanding indictment of the area’s efforts to stem labor and intercourse trafficking. Malaysia was downgraded final yr, whereas Myanmar has been at Tier 3 since 2018. Solely two of the area’s nations – Singapore and the Philippines – had been designated Tier 1.

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In launching this yr’s report, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that it represented a “combined image of progress.” Describing the TIP report as “one of the crucial complete sources of data anyplace on anti-trafficking efforts by governments,”  he earmarked corruption as a major problem in anti-trafficking efforts.

“Corruption continues to be a prime software of traffickers,” he stated. “Complicit authorities officers might flip a blind eye to illicit actions, present false paperwork for employees, tip off traffickers to impending raids. Corruption permits traffickers to proceed to behave with impunity.”

Corruption is actually on the coronary heart of Southeast Asia’s dire efficiency on this yr’s TIP report. In Cambodia, the TIP report said, “endemic corruption continued to impede general legislation enforcement operations, holding traffickers accountable, and sufferer service provision.”

Particularly, it impeded efforts to assist hundreds together with youngsters trafficked to leisure institutions, brick kilns, and on-line rip-off operations, the latter of which has grown to a gargantuan scale in 2022, as this latest Al Jazeera documentary makes clear. “Authorities usually neglected, denied, or downplayed labor abuses – together with pressured baby labor – in factories and at brick kilns and colluded with brick producers to arrest, jail, and return indentured laborers who had tried to flee,” the report said.

Within the case of Vietnam, the report stated that the federal government took no motion towards a Vietnamese labor attache stationed at Vietnam’s embassy in Saudi Arabia and one other embassy staffer who was accused of complicity in trafficking a number of of their residents. Regardless of Vietnam being an more and more shut accomplice of the U.S. the report concluded that it “doesn’t absolutely meet the minimal requirements for the elimination of trafficking and isn’t making vital efforts to take action.”

It additionally famous that the federal government of Brunei for the fifth consecutive yr “didn’t convict any traffickers below its trafficking statute,” and for the second consecutive yr, “didn’t determine any trafficking victims.” It added, “corruption and official complicity in trafficking crimes remained vital considerations, inhibiting legislation enforcement motion.”



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  1. […] due to a lack of progress toward stopping nonconsensual sex work and the absence of sufficient support for migrant workers. […]

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