Rohingya girls being sold into forced labour: UN

Published October 18, 2018
This file photo shows newly arrived Rohingya Muslims, who crossed over from Myanmar into Bangladesh, rest on an embankment after spending a night in the open as they have been prevented from moving ahead towards refugee camps by Bangladesh border guard soldiers at Palong Khali, Bangladesh on October 17, 2017.  — AP
This file photo shows newly arrived Rohingya Muslims, who crossed over from Myanmar into Bangladesh, rest on an embankment after spending a night in the open as they have been prevented from moving ahead towards refugee camps by Bangladesh border guard soldiers at Palong Khali, Bangladesh on October 17, 2017. — AP

UNITED NATIONS: Despe­rate Rohingya families living in camps in Bangladesh are selling girls into forced labour to raise money, the United Nations’ mig­ration agency said on Wednesday.

The International Organisa­tion for Migration (IOM) said it had identified 99 cases of human trafficking since September last year. It cautioned that the actual number was likely to be far greater.

“The stories we commonly hear are of vulnerable people being approached by traffickers with false promises of work and a better life,” IOM spokeswoman Dina Parmer said.

“Others may be aware it is dangerous, but feel their situation is so desperate that they are willing to take extreme measures, perhaps sacrificing one family member for the sake of the others,” she said in a statement.

A Bangladeshi charity, Young Power in Social Action (YPSA), has started a campaign to is raise awareness among refugees about the dangers of trafficking.

“More than 1,000 have been identified as victims of human trafficking,” said Jishu Barua of the YPSA.

Published in Dawn, October 18th, 2018

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