World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Laos Vulnerable To Trafficking By Organized Crime Groups

Laos 'Extremely Vulnerable' To Trafficking By Organized Crime Groups - UN Official

New York, Dec 5 2012 - Due to its unique position in the Greater Mekong region and its shared borders with five countries, Laos is "extremely vulnerable" to the trafficking of people, illicit drugs and commodities by organized crime groups, a senior United Nations official said today.

"While economic growth and regional integration bring many positives such as the increased mobility of goods, services, people and money, they also provide opportunities for transnational organized crime to expand, threaten human security and challenge the rule of law," said the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, during a visit to the country.

Mr. Fedotov stressed that in spite of its economic reforms, economic growth and efforts to combat corruption, Laos is at risk of trafficking because of its shared borders with Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam.

"Transnational organized criminal syndicates traffic in illicit drugs, children, women and men, counterfeit products and fake medicines. But they also play a role in illicit resource extraction including protected natural resources, timber, fish and other wildlife. These syndicates represent a threat to public health and to society's well-being," he added.

During his visit, Mr. Fedotov met with senior officials, including Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong, and reiterated UNODC's support for Government efforts to reduce illicit opium poppy cultivation, to increase food security, to develop sustainable livelihoods in former opium-growing areas, and to fight organized crime, corruption, terrorism, and the trafficking of people and sexual exploitation of minors.

He also visited a centre housing women and children who had been victimized by human trafficking, domestic violence and sexual exploitation, and commended police and prosecutors for focusing on victims and their human rights.

"We need more such shelters at a time when many of those in society are being victimized in this way," he said.

Mr. Fedotov also urged support for Project Childhood, an initiative to combat the sexual exploitation of children - mainly in the travel and tourism sectors - within the Greater Mekong subregion. The project is currently active in Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and Viet Nam. UNODC is involved in the project, which focuses on prevention and protection, by strengthening law enforcement capacity to identify, arrest and prosecute travelling child sex offenders.

For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Tel Aviv: 10,000 Protest In Tel Aviv For Peace & End To Occupation

Under a coalition of Israeli left-wing political parties and organizations, thousands gathered in Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square in the largest anti-war demonstration since the outbreak of violence in Gaza. More>>

ALSO:

Al Jazeera: Amal Alamuddin Lays Down Law On Jailing Journalists In Egypt

Amal Alamuddin, leading human rights lawyer, and expert on Egyptian legal system, has detailed the injustices in the Egyptian trial of three Al Jazeera English journalists in an incisive opinion piece for the Huffington Post. More>>

Ebola:UN Health Agency Reports Encouraging Signs In Nigeria

UNICEF and Partners take to the streets of Conakry, the capital of Guinea, to provide information on how to combat the Ebola outbreak as well as distribute soap and chlorine. Photo: UNICEF Guinea More>>



Indigenous Tribes: Peru Criticized For Failing Its Most Vulnerable Citizens

Peru Criticized for Failing Its Most Vulnerable Citizens Several weeks after seven uncontacted Indians emerged near the Brazil-Peru border, more uncontacted Indians have made first contact with Brazilian government agents, reportedly fleeing attacks ... More>>

Iraq: UN Declares Iraq ‘Level 3 Emergency’

The distribution of tents and non-food aid continues as the population of Newroz camp grows as more and more Yazidis arrive from Mount Sinjar in Iraq. Photo: UNHCR More>>

Ebola: Ebola: UN Says More Than 1 Million People Affected

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today convened a United Nations system-wide coordination meeting in response to the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa, which is now affecting more than 1 million people in the so-called “hot zone of disease transmission” ... More>>


UN News: ‘World Must Act Now’ To Avert Famine In Somalia

A United Nations human rights expert today urged the international community to “act now” to avert a humanitarian disaster in Somalia, where a widening hunger crisis has sparked fears of a repeat of the 2011 famine that devastated the war-ravaged ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news