Cablegate: Tip in Turkey: Turkish Media Attention, August 16-
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 21 ANKARA 005140
DEPARTMENT FOR G/TIP, G, INL, DRL, EUR/PGI, EUR/SE
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KCRM PHUM KWMN SMIG KFRD PREF TU TIP IN TURKEY
SUBJECT: TIP IN TURKEY: TURKISH MEDIA ATTENTION, August 16-
1. In response to G/TIP inquiries, national and
international media sources published the following news
articles about TIP in Turkey. Text of articles
originally published in Turkish is provided through
unofficial local FSN translation.
2. Published by Tempo Magazine in its August 16 edition:
TITLE: The Russian Mafia in Antalya: Russian Girls
become Sex Slaves in Ornekkoy, Lara
BEGIN TEXT: THE RUSSIAN MAFIA GOES RAMPANT IN ANTALYA
The rich Antalya businessman was chatting with his
friends at a crowded table at a fish restaurant on the
shore when he turned to them and said, "I need to feed
the birds." He left the table. As the rich
businessman has left to feed his birds, at the table
there was a heated conversation on "birds."
The rich businessman rented a house in the Ornekkoy
area of Lara, the famous district of Antalya for the
beautiful five girls he brought from Russia. He
stopped by a kebab place and bought Turkish pizza and
entered the house. The girls were sitting calmly.
While some were knitting and doing needlework, others
were reading books.
This Antalya businessman has been living for almost a
month with his "harem." The girls were providing
services to him. They were relieving not only the
businessman, but also the important guests of their
This is only one of the incidents that have turned
Antalya into a prostitution city. The businessman does
not sell these women, but using his money he makes his
private life more colorful. Actually this has been one
of the increasing supplies that went up in a prominent
way in recent times. When you say Ornekkoy, you
definitely see an impression hiding behind mischievous
looks. Everybody in Antalya knows that Ornekkoy has
been a residential center for Russians particularly who
work in the prostitution sector. This is a residential
area for Natashas. Night clubs and hotels in Ornekkoy
have turned into a place where the pretty Russian
As a result of research that "Tempo" conducted in
Antalya and with information obtained from security
sources, we found important facts about the Kurdish and
Russian Mafia cooperation in the prostitution traffic.
Russian girls are sold, bought and rented as if they
are a commodity. They are transferred from one person
to the other.
According to the security sources, the Kurdish Mafia is
conducting the Natasha prostitution traffic in Antalya.
Special "contact tours" are organized to Russia for
this purpose. Or the woman exchange is conducted
through the Russian Mafia.
Russian women are brought to ports and airports.
Security forces have a very important allegation about
this point. This is a grave accusation that in Russia
there is a state mechanism, like a ministry, in charge
of women, is organizing the prostitution, in particular
for Turkey. Security forces are aware that Russian
prostitutes, who are deported after being caught in
prostitution, obtain a new ID with the help of the
state and return to Turkey. According to these
sources, the Russian Mafia is powerful enough to have
an influence at the state level.
The first step for the Russian women who enter
prostitution in Antalya is to arrive at the airport.
They are met by members of the Kurdish Mafia. There is
a certain price for renting these women. Although it
differs, depending on their characteristics, two
Russian prostitutes can be rented for two months for
$5000. Two months later, one has to return the girls
to their original master without any damage. If there
is interest, their rental period can be extended in
return for money. Or the girls are rented to new
A police operation conducted two years ago gave an
important tip about the financial dimension of
prostitution. Police caught a Kurdish pimp whose diary
listed the names of all women with checkmarks. A
Natasha can go out with 15 separate clients in one
night and this astonishes even the police.
Natashas charge 50 YTL per hour. Overnight charge is
100 Euro. There is information that women are rented
for a week or a month.
The prostitution traffic is conducted through two
means: First, just like the case in the Aksaray
(Istanbul) market, one openly bargains at nigh clubs or
on the dance floor. Secondly, bargaining can be
conducted on the phone through a pimp.
It has been said that lately this bargaining has been
going on mostly through the phone in Antalya. Wherever
the client wants, a pimp takes the Natasha to a house
or a hotel.
Security forces also are aware of the role of the night
clubs in the prostitution business in Antalya.
According to security records, some night clubs
organize the prostitution. Some night club managers of
Kurdish origin, who have a criminal record of theft,
are involved in the Natasha trade. These people are
also involved in drug trafficking as well. In other
words, the Kurdish Mafia is conducting both Natasha and
Recently a new issue popped up: The Russian capital
lately has been investing in particular in the tourism
sector and that the Russian Mafia was influential in
this sector. This fact is silently accepted in
Antalya. It also constitutes the secret agenda of
More importantly, Antalya talks about the Turks who
were punished by being subject to Russian Mafia's
torture. Turks who are cheated by the Russian Mafia
are suffering from an economic collapse.
"Tempo" reporters reached two Turks who were victims of
the Russian Mafia but who refused to identify
themselves because of the fear. They indicated that
Antalya was full of signs that the Russian Mafia was
rampant in Antalya.
C.K. has been in the tourism business for 20 years. He
owns a hotel, one of the five-star places in Antalya.
He entered partnership with a Russian last January.
C.K. was impressed with the charisma of the Russian who
introduced himself as the President of Spartak Moscow.
They bought land and wanted to create new investment
centers. But the Russian partner never met any of his
obligations. C.K. was in debt and secured loans. His
Russian partner kept saying that he would resolve it.
He never kept any of his promises. C.K. faced a full
collapse and lost all his professional prestige. One
day he traveled to Moscow as the guest of his Russian
partner and experienced the following interesting
"One day my Russian partner invited me to Moscow. He
took me to such a place that it was impossible not to
be infatuated. We went there with a Mercedes. We drew
through a special forest and stopped along with super
luxurious vans and got out of the car. We passed the
body guards and arrived at a restaurant. I could not
believe my eyes. I was surprised to see such a place.
It was an unbelievable place. There was a person at
the table who was introduced as an aide to Putin.
There were Russian politicians and businessmen. I saw
UNSYG Annan at the next table. I think it was a state
restaurant. I felt lucky when I realized the
connections of my partner. I told to myself, 'OK. We
will do great things.' But I still cannot get angry
at him. I still am speechless in the face of his
charisma. But I can say that there were around six or
seven Turks like me. We did not apply to any
officials. There was nothing to do. The Russian Mafia
is trying to take over the Turkish tourism. That was
why we were the victims of a major operation."
Another victim of the Russian Mafia is T.Y., who has
been involved in tourism for 19 years. He, too, was
deceived like C.K. by the same Russian man. He had to
sell all his assets. Currently the Russian still is
his partner because T.Y. cannot get out of it since the
Russian partner is not around. He, too, is aware that
he was deceived by the Russian Mafia. He said, "I made
a mistake. I had the illusion that I would become a
big businessman and earn a lot of money. I thought
that I was lucky."
He brought to our attention the influence of the
Russian Mafia in Antalya. According to a probe by
"Tempo," we tracked down a member of the Russian Mafia.
The person who introduced himself as the President of
Sparta Moscow is Gelani Tovbulatov. There were Turkish
media reports on him 2004. He bought two flats with a
sea view for 150,000 Euros in the Club Erdogan
Residence, in Konyaalti, Antalya. He was the first
Russian to buy a residence in Turkey. Tovbulatov was a
former KGB spy. He headed the Sparta Moscow Ice Hockey
team. It was claimed that he was a prominent member of
the Russian Mafia.
There are many allegations about the activities of the
Russian Mafia in Antalya. It was claimed that the
capital of many travel agencies came from Russians but
Turks were seen as owners. It was also claimed that
there were serious money laundering operations.
A Turkish businessman who was subject to torture by the
Russian Mafia said important things. After entering a
partnership, the businessman had problems and was
invited to Moscow. His hands and feet were tied and
was kept hostage in a house. He was subject to
intensive beating and torture. All his wealth was
taken away from him. He signed some documents and he
received a blow economically.
According to sources in Antalya, the Russian Mafia also
tortured Turks in Antalya. The strange part about it
was nobody applied to officials and complained about
torture by the Russian Mafia because they are very
afraid. Huseyin Acarlioglu, who has around 25 leather
and jewelry shops in Russia and at one point had a
partner from the Russian Mafia, said that the Russian
Mafia did not respect any rules and behaved the way it
liked. He warned that for this reason Turks should be
careful while doing business with Russians.
KURDISH MAFIA WITHIN THE CITADEL (AREA)
The other agenda item in Antalya are some problems that
began with the Kurdish influx to the city. Especially
lately Kurdish origin people began to serve as bar,
night club or parking managers in the area within the
Antalya Citadel. There is a serious uneasiness in the
area about this fact. According to an allegation, the
Kurdish Mafia, too, is active in the same area. I
learned that some were operating without licenses and
no legal action can be taken against them. The Kurdish
Mafia has created its own sphere of influence in the
region. For example, using children as beggars, like
in Istanbul, is valid for Antalya as well. Also, the
Kurdish Mafia is controlling parking, drugs and
prostitution. In some police operation, information is
obtained to prove this fact.
IF YOU ARE DOING BUSINESS WITH RUSSIANS, NEVER MAKE A
Huseyin Acarlioglu is the owner of companies called
"Mondial" and "Alice." He also is the honorary consul
of Kazakhstan in Antalya. He has major investments in
Russia in the leather and jewelry business. Acarlioglu
shared with "Tempo" the codes and activities of the
Russian Mafia, as well as the characteristics of the
most dangerous Mafia of the world.
He said, "In 1998 I was having dinner in Moscow. I had
a very bright friend at the table. The person we were
having dinner was the partner Abromovitch, who
currently is the owner of 'Chelsea.' While chatting,
my friend said, 'Invest in Antalya. We can make hotels
and holiday villages together.' That person responded,
'I'll ask you something. Is there a Mafia in Antalya?'
When my friend said, 'No,' that person said that then
there won't be anything happening in Antalya. He went
on, 'They are in New York, Tokyo, and Moscow. Meaning
that the money is there. This means that there is no
money in Antalya. Mafia is where the money is. One
needs to accept this.'
"Antalya is a region generating a serious amount of
money. Land is very expensive. In order to accomplish
something, one needs to receive a go ahead from many
places. The Russian Mafia has arrived and active here
because they are making serious investments gradually.
"I had a business partner. He owned 49 percent of the
shares of an oil company. He proposed, 'Huseyin, you
take my oil and sell to Syria, Southern Cyprus and
Malta.' I told him that this was not my business. But
I was involved in barter trade. I sent him textiles,
he sent back raw leather, polyethylene and lumber. We
had such a partnership. At that stage I began to open
branches. I opened my first branch in Kazan in
leather. Later I entered the jewelry business. The
governor of that town was a strong man. He was my
friend. I began with his encouragement.
"The businessman who I referred as 'oilman' was also a
Mafia member. When we were having dinner at his summer
house we were surrounded by his 15-20 bodyguards. They
were carrying automatic rifles under their coat. This
is a fact of life there. Somebody came to us running
and whispered something in my partner's ear. He jumped
for joy and said, 'Today is a joyful day for me. We
will eat and drink the best today. We will have fun.'
He had a Mafia rival in the South and he reportedly
killed all members of that Mafia, including the leader.
They were ambushed. Our partner was very pleased. Our
"'Mondial' has been doing its own business for 21
years. I employ 1000 people. I have employees in
Russia. I also have a hotel venture in Antalya. I
have a plot of land of around 200,000 square meters on
the shore. I'm planning to open a 5-star hotel aiming
at 'therapeutic tourism.' I receive serious offers,
mostly from Russia, to be my partner. I may enter
"In Russia the state is regarded as a Mafia. If the
state wants, the price of a land can increase. It may
make a company very successful and another go bankrupt.
There are strong politicians who are also Mafia
members. Strong businessmen are also Mafia members.
Similarly, strong artists, too, are Mafia members. One
has to regard the Mafia like this. In the past 'street
Mafia' was more prominent in Russia but some of them
earned a lot of money and became gentlemen. They drive
the most fashionable cars and I can see that their
behavior has changed. I can observe that they live in
very good houses and mingle with good politicians or
"Most of the Russian investors coming to Turkey are
involved in mining, iron, oil, gas and lumber business
in their own country. They have serious assets. They
earn their living by getting their income. The
cheapest rent was $150,000 per year, five fold of what
they would pay in Antalya. Such people invest their
money through sound links in Turkey. These can be
hotel land, villas, and houses. They buy a hotel and
manage it. And this trend is accelerating.
"About a year ago a law was adopted. In the past
Russians were not allowed to buy property. The state
granted this right to people from the North. I had
some friends. They bought houses and other property
here. They put the deed in my name. Why? They could
not buy property. They had to do it through a person
they trusted. But now the business is legal. So I
returned the deed to them.
"Russians have a Mafia-like method. That country has
such a tradition. One has to accept this. If you
enter a business, you should not make a mistake because
laws won't protect you in that country. You may do
business and pay money and you are robbed but laws do
not protect you there. Who ever is strong, his will
rules. If you are rich, then you can pursue your
business. You need to have dependable and sound
business partners there. One has to be very careful
about entering business partnership with Russians.
Although partnership means something in global
commerce, this may mean nothing there. In other words,
the man there one day may question, 'Why am I not
having all?' They don't respect the rules. One has to
be prepared to this.
"There has been money laundering around the world, and
not only in Turkey. If you put $500,000 in your pocket
and fly to Canada, they offer you citizenship. Those
people are investing their money in very different
countries." END TEXT.
3. Published by Milliyet on Friday, August 19:
TITLE: Ukrainian Woman on Vacation in a Prostitution
BEGIN TEXT: A Ukrainian woman who called the 157
hotline from Alanya, Antalya and said she was forced
into prostitution was saved by a sting operation.
Information gathered shows Natalia B. (23) called 157
and said she was stuck in a prostitution quagmire. She
asked for help.
When the young woman gave an approximate address of
where she was, the Public Order Department of the
police got organized. The teams determined the house
where the woman was staying, retrieved her and took her
to the police department.
Natalia B explained that she came to Alanya for
vacation and met a person named Yakup Gurakar. She
said that he raped her and forced her into
prostitution. Upon this development Gurakar, B.D. and
C.B. were detained and taken to court. While Gurakar
was arrested, the Ukrainian woman was given to the
Foreigner's Department of the police for deportation.
4. Published by Milliyet on Friday, August 19:
TITLE: A 13 YEAR OLD GIRL SAVED FROM PROSTITUTION
BEGIN TEXT: B.C. (13) who had been missing for 15 days
in Kahramanmaras was saved from the hands of a
prostitution network. Ten people who made the little
girl serve as a prostitute and those who entered a
relationship with her were arrested.
V.C. applied to the police 15 days ago and said that
his daughter B.C. was missing. Police Public Order
Heavy Crimes Department teams learned that B.C. was in
the hands of Nurgul S. and Songul P., who had a
criminal record for serving as prostitutes and
mediating for prostitution. Police conducted its
investigation in great secrecy and with an operation
saved B.C. from the prostitution network. Nurgl S. &
Songl P., who forced B.C. into prostitution and Ycel
S., Ahmet G., Milcan K., Hamza P., Murat B., Mehmet B.,
Seyfettin S. & Sleyman F., who allegedly had sexual
contact with her, were detained.
B.C., who claimed that the two women forced her into
prostitution in return for 20-30 m TL, was given to her
The ten suspects, including the two women, were sent to
court where they were arrested for kidnapping an
underage youngster, forcing her into prostitution with
threats and raping a girl younger that 15. END TEXT.
5. Published by Turkish Daily News on Sunday, August 21:
TITLE: Turkey to host international forum on human
BEGIN TEXT: Turkey is preparing to host an
international conference on human trafficking later
this month to discuss the problem and ways to deal with
it, the Foreign Ministry announced in a statement.
The conference on "Trafficking in Persons in Southeast
Europe-a Threat to Human Security" is a joint
initiative of the Regional Stability in South East
Europe (RSSEE) Study Group of the Germany-based
Partnership for Peace Consortium of Defense Academies
and Security Studies Institutes, the International
Organization on Migration (IOM), and the Center for
Strategic Research at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign
Affairs. It will take place on August 25-27 at
Istanbul's Bahcesehir University, the Foreign Ministry
Turkey, a destination country for a growing number of
women from the former Soviet republics who have been
trafficked primarily for sexual exploitation, has taken
a series of steps to fight human trafficking. It
introduced an action plan and launched a national task
force two years ago to cope with the issue.
The efforts were in response to a surge over the past
few years in the number of persons trafficked into
Turkey, mostly in parallel to improving living
standards and job opportunities here.
The Geneva-based IOM, which Turkey joined in 2004, is a
major ally of the Turkish government in counter-
The Istanbul conference will focus on several aspects
of the human trafficking including rights of victims,
especially in destination countries, to temporary
resident permits and law enforcement measures that
could be taken to stop human trafficking-with a focus
on investigative techniques-to witness-protection
programs and cross-border collaboration.
It will also cover anti-trafficking measures that could
be taken at the regional level.
Turkey launched a 157 telephone hotline to assist
trafficked individuals two months ago, and security
officials were able to rescue more than a dozen victims
after calls were made to the hotline.
The IOM says Turkey's anti-trafficking efforts have
brought about significant progress but calls for
increased prosecution of traffickers. END TEXT.
6. Published by Sabah on Sunday, August 21:
TITLE: WHILE ESCAPING POVERTY, THEY LOST THEIR FREEDOM
BEGIN TEXT: They are always on the 3rd pages of
newspapers. Picture of a young woman of Ukrainian or
Moldavian, Georgian, Uzbek origin, with a black line on
her eyes (to conceal her identity), is published with a
three or five sentence article noting that she was
captured during an operation and while being involved
There may be some readers who think that this was the
path they chose but most of them actually come here for
working in regular jobs. They fall in the hands of
human traffickers and turn into modern age slaves.
Where do I know? Because there have been thousands of
calls to Hotline 157 although it opened only two months
This line was set up by the IOM and it has saved lives
of those who are in particular citizens of the former
The IOM was established during the 1st Gulf War in
1991. Its headquarters is in Geneva and has 109
members. We talked to Selin Unal, the rep of IOM, both
about human trafficking, and the 157 hotline.
Unal explained that the U.S. ad Turkish Governments
were financing the $700,000 budget of a campaign to
prevent human trafficking. She added that a great
majority of human trafficking victims were Moldavians
Unal noted that as of Friday (August 19), the IOM has
saved 144 women. She noted that in the past they were
able to reach these women when they called an authority
in their own country or during operations by Turkish
She said that 44 of these women came to Turkey from the
Ukraine, 39 from Moldavia, 16 from Russia, 11 from
Uzbekistan, 10 from Kyrgyzstan, seven from Romania,
five from Kazakhstan, five from Belarus, three from
Armenia, two from Turkmenistan, one from Azerbaijan and
one from Uganda. They sent back 132 of them to their
countries. The twelve remain here for finalizing the
procedures and for rehabilitation work.
It has been seen that more than one third of these
women were kept as slaves in Istanbul. Antalya comes
the second and Ankara the third.
Among victims 82 entered Turkey from Istanbul, seven
from Sarp and five from Antalya. When one looks at the
ages of the victims, one sees that traffickers are
after young women since 13 of those who were saved were
between 16-18 years old, 73 were between 19-25, 35 is
between 26-30 and eight between 31-38. Only three were
older than 38.
There is also a hotline 157 that has been operating
since May 23. Thousands of calls were evaluated and
passed on to the police and Jandarma. This has been
conducted in cooperation with the former Soviet
republics and it is an important component of the fight
against human trafficking.
They could reach 31 of the 144 women who were saved
through this hotline. The 157 operators speak Russian,
Romanian and English along with Turkish. Information
on all calls are conveyed to the law enforcement
officials. Sometimes after a long pursuit they can
reach victims who fell into the hands of and forced
into prostitution by human traffickers.
How does one exploit a person in human trafficking?
Unal responded by saying, "Turkey is both a destination
and transit country in human trafficking. By checking
the statistics we can say that a great majority of
victims in Turkey are subject to sexual exploitation
and are forced to work in the prostitution sector.
This does not rule out the fact that other types of
exploitation also exist. There are those who are
forced to do house work, those who do not get paid,
those who are forced to do another job than the one
they thought they would be doing, and those whose
passports are taken away from them. A woman, who is
from Uganda, called 157 for being forced to work."
Since they have to live with an income less than $1 per
day in their country, these women consider working in
Turkey as a salvation. How they end up in the hands of
human traffickers is both identical and at the same
time very different from each other.
Information at the website www.countertrafficking.org
too, confirms this fact. According to it those at
greatest risk are women who are between 16-24 years of
age without adequate education. A great majority of
these women, who do not have a hope to get a good job
in their own country, have kids and become an easy
target for human traffickers to promise them a between
job and life.
Those who come to Turkey through mediators in their own
country to become a dancer, waitress or baby-sitter,
they find themselves in the middle of a nightmare.
Even before they leave their country, these women were
made part of human trafficking and turn into a prey
through newspaper ads offering jobs abroad. In general
these women are made slaves through other women within
major crime gangs. According to studies, each criminal
organization has around 80 employees for finding houses
and for other arrangements.
The stories of the victims who end up returning home
demonstrate the scope of their nightmare. They said
that if they did not abide by what was said, they were
raped, tortured, threatened to be killed, beaten and
made to starve. They added that those who were
pregnant were forced to enter intercourse and that
infants were killed after labor.
These modern slaves are sold numerous times as they
wait to be saved. Some enter the domination of one
merchant for $200 while others go for $2000.
It is extremely hard for them to run away from this
hell. These women are closely monitored and locked in
apartments. They are threatened that their families
would be killed if they flee. Those who still try and
manage to escape, have a hard time continuing their
life from where they left before because the trauma
they experienced affects them deeply. According to
psychiatrists only 30 percent of these women recover
enough to lead a normal life.
The IOM meets the needs of the women and children here
before they are sent to their countries. Psychological
support is provided to those who are having a trauma.
Unal said that victims stay at the Kiev's shelter in
Istanbul until they leave Turkey. She added, "A
shelter will open in Ankara as well in September."
Since these women who are saved do not have passports,
first passports are issued. Those who are ready to go
back home are put on a plane accompanied by a person
who is assigned for this job. If they like, in their
home country, they can attend a program for
rehabilitation. They, too, are hosted at shelters
there until their need for psychological, social and
legal needs are met.
Those who want to continue with their education or
learn a profession can receive help. They are even
provided with small amounts of credit to begin a job.
Officials pay periodic calls on them and see whether
these victims face any pressure.
THEIR STORIES ARE SAD
The stories of some of the victims on the
www.countertrafficking.org run by the IOM give an idea
how young women are deceived.
She Was Victimized by Friend
I was born in Moldavia in 1974. I had economic
problems. A girl friend said that one could earn good
money in Turkey by dancing. I earlier worked as a
dancer in Slovenia and encountered no problem. My
friend who offered me the job arranged for my expenses,
plane ticket and passport. They told me that a man
named Veysel would meet me at the Antalya airport.
Veysel took me to a village house in Antalya. They
took away my passport. There was a woman from Moldavia
at that house. They told me that I was brought here to
serve in the prostitution sector. When I objected and
wanted to return home, I was beaten at gunpoint. I was
subject to pressure. Clients were coming to the
village house. A few other girls, too, were doing the
same thing. One day the Moldavian women took me to a
hotel to a client. From the hotel I called a hotline
by the Moldavian NGO La Strada. I asked for help.
They asked me to call 157. I called 157 and told the
operator where I was. The Antalya police saved me.
They Told Me That I Was in Debt
My profession is cooking. I'm from Romania. I was
told that I would work as a dancer at a casino. I
signed a contract in Romania with an employer in
Turkey. The contract said that expenses would be
covered by the employer. When I arrived in Turkey I
was told that I was in debt. My accommodation, the
visit to a doctor and even the cigarette that I smoked
were listed as debt. They asked me to serve as a
prostitute at a night club to pay my debt. I did not
accept and told them that this was a violation of human
rights. I wanted to go back home. They did not allow
me to go home. When I went to the Turkish Embassy in
Romania to get a visa, they gave me a brochure about
the 157 Hotline. I called 157 and eight more Romanian
women, too, were saved. The other eight women, who
have kids and old families, did not file a complaint
against those who forced them to work because they did
not want to go back home without any money.
We Would Serve As Waiters
I was born in Moldavia in 1984. With my girlfriend who
was born in 1980 and still another girlfriend, we met a
man in Chisinau. He told us that we could work as
waitresses in Kusadasi. He arranged our ticket and
passport. We arrived in Istanbul on May 4. A Turkish
man met us at the airport and we took a bus to
Kusadasi. We were told that there was no place to work
as a waitress in Turkey and that because of our travel
expenses, we owed them and that we should pay our debt
in one way or another. They also told us that we could
pay back by serving as prostitutes and that there was
no other way. We did not accept. They told us that we
could work for one month until we pay our debt and then
we could work on our own. Nothing changed after a
month. I remembered calling the hotline at home. When
I called the hotline by La Strada, they told me to call
157. In half an hour the police saved us and other
They Sold Us to Ankara
I was born in Ukraine in 1982. I have a daughter who
is one-and-a-half years old. I'm separated from my
husband. We were living with my mom and both of us
were unemployed. A man told my girl friend who was
born in 1984 that he could find us a job as waitresses
in Turkey and we would earn good money. My friend
introduced me to that man who arranged our travel to
Turkey. In Istanbul we were met by a Turkish man. He
took us to the market place and began to buy us flashy
nightgowns. He told us that we owe him and that we
could pay him back by working as prostitutes. When we
objected, he told us that we did not have an
alternative. When we wanted to go back, they did not
let us. They could not sell us in Istanbul. So they
sold us to Ankara. We were taken to Ankara and they
made us work there. My friend one day called her
boyfriend in the Ukraine and asked for help. Her
boyfriend called the hotline in Moldavia and they told
him that we should call 157 in Turkey. He told us so
and we called 157. They called 155 and policemen saved
us from a hotel in Ankara. END TEXT.
7. Published by Anadolu Ajansi on Friday, August 19:
TITLE: Istanbul to Host an International Conference on
Human Smuggling (Comment: This conference is actually
on Human Trafficking. End Comment.)
BEGIN TEXT: An international conference will take place
in Istanbul in the coming days under Turkey's fight
against human smuggling.
Releasing a statement, the Turkish Ministry of Foreign
Affairs stated on Friday that Istanbul would host an
international conference between August 25th and 28th
in association with the Austrian Ministry of Defense,
Germany-based Southeastern Europe Regional Stability
Working Group and the International Organization for
Issues such as protection of victims of human
smuggling, their integration to society in their
countries, legal arrangements about human smuggling,
and cross-border cooperation will be discussed at the
The conference will take place at Istanbul's Bahcesehir
University. END TEXT.
8. Published by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty on Tuesday,
TITLE: World: Sex Traffickers Prey on Eastern
BEGIN TEXT: UNESCO, the UN's cultural organization,
has proclaimed August 23 as International Day for the
Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition. But
despite laws against slavery in all of the world's
countries, modern-day slavery continues to thrive in
illegal underground forms. In the second of a two-part
series, RFE/RL correspondent Ron Synovitz examines how
the latest wave of sex-slave trafficking preys upon
Eastern European women to fuel the global sex trade.
Prague, 23 August 2005 (RFE/RL)-Maria is a 30-year-old
mother from Ukraine who left behind her husband and two
young children to take what she was told would be a job
in Italy as a cleaner.
The recruiters who originally promised her a high-
paying salary were men who posed as representatives of
a legitimate employment agency. Maria says they gained
her trust because they looked professional and
"The process I went through to get there was normal.
Everything looked fine. There were two other girls
with me. They were from the same region, but I didn't
know them. I was going [to Italy] to work as a
housekeeper. In Ukraine, they told me already that I
would work either as a housekeeper or work in a bar
washing dishes," Maria said.
Maria says her nightmare began after she and the other
women arrived in Italy and were met by several
suspicious men. They were human traffickers in the
illegal global sex industry.
"We went there and arrived in one city. They took us
to a building on the outskirts of the city and they
told us to clean off, to relax from the travel. Later,
they confronted us with the fact that we would be
providing sex services. It is a shock for a human
being. Escape from there was impossible. The windows
were barred and there was the constant presence of a
guard," Maria said.
One man in the building told Maria he had "bought" her
for several hundred dollars. He said she owed him money
for the cost of the airplane ticket and would have to
work for him until the debt was repaid.
For the next nine months, Maria was forced against her
will to work as a prostitute. Sometimes she was forced
to have sex with 10 different men within a single day.
She was beaten brutally whenever she refused. And if a
customer complained about her performance, the brothel
owner added a fine to her debt-prolonging her sentence
as a sex slave.
It was only when the brothel was raided by Italian
police that Maria was freed from captivity.
Authorities in Italy charged her with prostitution and
deported her back to Ukraine.
Maria's story is a common one in Eastern Europe and the
former Soviet republics.
Trafficking from the region for sexual exploitation has
become so common since the early 1990s that it is
considered by experts as a distinct wave in the global
The U.S. State Department estimates that 800,000 people
are trafficked against their will across international
borders every year and that millions more are
John Miller directs the U.S. State Department's Office
for Monitoring and Combating Trafficking in persons.
"Information on slavery is very inexact. But we
believe that the majority of slave victims-in the
neighborhood of 80 percent-are the female gender, and
that around 50 percent are children. We believe that
the largest category of slavery is sex slavery. This
is not to minimize other large categories-domestic
servitude slavery, forced labor in farms and factory
slavery, child soldier slavery," Miller said.
Organized criminal groups have created intricate
transport routes to move women to different countries.
Most of these routes-whether over land, sea or
air-originally were established by weapon and drug
The so-called "Eastern Route" through Poland and into
German is a key overland corridor for smuggling women
into the European Union from Russia, Ukraine, Romania,
and the Baltics. The cities of Prague, Amsterdam, and
Frankfurt also are common destinations. Large numbers
of these women also reportedly end up in Italy, Greece,
Belgium, Austria, and France.
The so-called "Balkan route" is another notorious path
for sex-trade traffickers. It moves through Serbia and
Montenegro, Croatia, Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia-
Herzegovina, and Kosovo.
A third major trafficking route passes through southern
Bulgaria into Greece. Eastern European women,
especially Ukrainians, also end up in Turkey after
traveling overland through Georgia and Bulgaria, or
after crossing the Black Sea on boats from the
Ukrainian port of Odessa.
Meanwhile, the former Soviet republics in the Caucasus
and Central Asia have emerged in recent years as new
recruitment zones-with women being moved through
Central Europe to the EU or to the Middle East and
Israel, the United Arab Emirates, South Korea,
Thailand, China, and Japan also are considered key
destinations for criminal groups that smuggle women for
Miller, who is responsible for the State Department's
annual report on trafficking in persons, says Canada
and the United States are also becoming significant
"Human trafficking is synonymous with slavery. Human
trafficking relies on coercion and exploitation. It
thrives on converting hope to fear. It's maintained
through violence. The trade in people is a major
source of revenue-in the billions [of dollars per
year]-for organized crime, along with the drug trade
and the arms trade. Let there be no misunderstanding.
Modern slavery plagues every country in the
world-including the United States," Miller said.
Canadian-based journalist Viktor Malarek is the author
of "Natashas: The New Global Sex Trade." His book
documents how criminal groups have increasingly preyed
upon the hopes of young women like Maria since the
collapse of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union.
Malarek says that in places like Israel and Turkey, the
name Natasha has become synonymous with prostitutes or
victims of the sex trade from all the former communist
countries of Eastern Europe-whether they are from
Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine or Russia. And
regardless of their nationalities, brothel owners and
their customers usually refer to these women as
Malarek says not all of those caught up in the
international sex trade are innocent and nave women
who have been led astray. He says police and
government officials stress that some women willingly
enter the sex trade. But he says the vast majority of
Eastern European women lured into the trade are not
aware of the nature of sex slavery or the conditions
they will work in.
Malarek concludes that virtually every city, town and
village in Eastern and Central Europe has seen some of
its girls and women disappear-becoming expendable pawns
in the sex business.
It has been several years now since Maria returned to
her home in Ukraine. She still has not told her family
about her ordeal in Italy. She says that she is unsure
if she ever will be able to tell her husband the truth.
"It was not worth it. What is important in life is
family-my children and my husband-in spite of
everything. At the beginning, the desire for material
wealth was at the front of my mind and family came in
second place. But after what happened, my priorities
have been reversed," Maria said.
Maria now offers advice to other young women who are
being recruited for jobs abroad as cleaners, nannies,
bartenders, waitresses or models. She says before
traveling, women should think long and hard about where
they are going, why they have received the job offer,
and what they expect to happen to them once they leave
home. END TEXT.
9. Published by Vatan on Sunday, August 21:
TITLE: BRIDE DISAPPEARS ON THE EVE OF HENNA NIGHT
BEGIN TEXT: Ayca Okmen Dereli, who earlier married
Aydin Dereli, disappeared on the "henna night" before
their wedding in Kusadasi.
Dereli is concerned that his wife might be in the hands
of women traffickers. He applied to the Jandarma and
said, "Please find my wife." He said that following
his wife her friend Nazmiye Ozada (21), too,
Dereli works as a decorator in Kusadasi. He officially
wed Ayca Okmen at the Kusadasi Municipality on July 27.
He furnished his flat in the Yuvam Kur residential area
and spent about 12,000 YTL.
They got invitations printed to a "henna night" on
August 12 and a wedding on August 13.
Dereli said, "Ayca wanted to come out as a bride from
her grandmother's house in Nazilli. So I went to
Nazilli on August 12 for the henna night. She was not
there. Her family told me that she went to Aydin to
meet me. Her phone was turned off. I'm looking for
her since them. My Ayca disappeared before she could
put on her wedding gown."
Dereli said that with family members and guests they
looked for Ayca in Nazilli and Aydin but could not find
a trace. He added, "The same night Nazmiye Ozada, a
girl friend of my wife, too, looked for her the same
evening. The next day she disappeared as well. I'm
afraid they are in the hands of women traffickers. I
want my wife to be found before bad things appeared to
her." END TEXT.
10. Reported by Sabah on Wednesday, August 24:
TITLE: THEY WERE BASED ON THE UPPER FLOOR OF A WOMEN'S
BEGIN TEXT: The police raided five separate houses
following the information that a Turk and his Russian
wife were forcing foreign women into prostitution in
It was surprising to see that one of the flats was the
upper floor of an association defending women's rights.
In other words, while women were forced into
prostitution on the upper floor, others were working to
protect women on the lower floor.
Police found about the network when Russian U.G.
testified after fainting as she was walking in the
Konak district last week. After a medical treatment,
she was taken to the police station where she said that
she was brought to Turkey with promises of working as a
dancer but found herself in a prostitution ring. She
explained that she and her friends were forced into
prostitution. The police conducted immediate raids on
the houses in Hatay and Guzelyali and saved the women.
11. Published by Tercuman on Saturday, August 20:
TITLE: "Hair-rising 'Commerce' Report"
BEGIN TEXT: International institutions are closely
monitoring the lives of women who serve as sex slaves
because of pressure and violence.
"Medecins du Monde" in Greece, International Blue
Crescent Humanitarian Assistance and Development
Foundation, with the support of the European
Commission's Turkey Representative, completed a study
on trafficking of women. The report, entitled,
"Trafficking in Women is an Important Human Rights
Violation," was sent to relevant institutions.
Muzaffer Baza, Vice President of the Blue Crescent,
said the following on the report prepared with
contributions from the academicians, TNP and MFA,
"Human trafficking also involves women trafficking for
sexual exploitation. Human trafficking is a manmade
disaster but the world is ignoring the suffering of
these women. As the society we need to help these
women who are forced to work as slaves. We must know
who uses these women known as Natashas and how."
Baca noted that human and women trafficking could be
prevented by international cooperation. He added,
"This is team work. It is conducted by international
organized crime. We should not regard the issue only
through law-enforcement measures since it involves
human rights violations as well. We are a destination
country as well because of our location. We have to
cooperate with other countries that experience the same
problem with us. There is workforce coming to Turkey
from Southeast Europe, Russia, Caucasus, Middle East
and Africa. Many illegal sex slaves who come from
Ukraine, Moldavia, Romania, Russia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
and Belarus, work in Turkey. Some of them are brought
here by the organized crime and forced into
prostitution. A great majority arrive knowing that
they would work as illegal sex worker."
In a two small sidebar articles, the daily wrote that
the report was 170 pages long. The project coordinator
was Nazan Sati. The sub-titles included: Reasons and
Results for Human Trafficking; Human Trafficking and
Reproductive Health; What Turkey Has Done to Prevent
Human Trafficking? And Human Trafficking in the Black
Sea Region and Trabzon.
Grigoris Lazos from the Panteion University in Athens
said, "Human trafficking began in 1980s. In 1990s
women from Russia, Albania, Moldavia, Ukraine and
Balkan countries began to come to Greece and work in
the prostitution sector. In 2000 there were incredible
increases and problems in the prostitution sector. In
1997, the number of women who were forced and tortured
into prostitution reached 250,000. Greece turned into
a concentration center for these women. ..." END
12. Published by Pakistan Online International News Network
and Pak Tribune on Wednesday, August 24:
TITLE: Pakistan calls for cooperation from Iran,
Afghanistan, Turkey to curb human trafficking
BEGIN TEXT: ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has asked Iran,
Turkey, Greece, and Afghanistan to extend cooperation
to its law enforcement agencies in elimination of human
A high level meeting was held here Tuesday in interior
ministry to review the steps taken by the government
for eradication of human trafficking. Interior
Minister Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao presided over the
Director General FIA and senior officials of respective
agencies identified the hindrances on the way to
prevention of human trafficking.
Interior ministry sources told Online it was decided in
the meeting that Pakistan would improve its contacts
with neighbouring countries to curbing menace of human
smuggling. These countries would be asked to join
hands with Pakistan in its drive for elimination of
human trafficking as the elements involved in this evil
bring bad name for the respective countries by using
their borders [sic].
The Interior Minister also underscored the need for
forging a joint bloc with Iran, Greece, Turkey and
other neighbouring countries so that intelligence could
be shared with these countries on this issue and those
involved in this heinous crime could be apprehended.
The Interior Minister informed that hundreds of agents
involved in human smuggling had been arrested due to
government efforts and cases have been registered
against them. "We will not give in to any pressure in
this connection," he announced.
He directed FIA to tighten [the] security systems at
all airports and initiate stern action against the FIA
personnel involved in this trade. END TEXT.
13. Reported by Daily Times [Pakistan] on Wednesday, August
TITLE: Interior Ministry wants foreign coordination to
stop human trafficking
BEGIN TEXT: Islamabad: The Interior Ministry and the
Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) reviewed the
government's anti-human trafficking policies on Tuesday
and called for better coordination among countries
facing the problem.
FIA Director General Tariq Pervez briefed a meeting
about the latest situation on human smuggling.
Interior Minister Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao chaired the
The FIA said that the smugglers were using a route
through Pakistan, Iran and Turkey to illegally send
people to Europe. They said there was a need to crack
the new routes developed by the human traffickers.
The meeting called for establishing additional
immigration check posts and passport circles to control
illegal immigration through the Pakistan-Iran border
and coastal areas of Balochistan.
FIA sources told Daily Times that a number of human
traffickers were still operating in Gujranwala, Gujrat,
Mandi Bahauddin, Sialkot and the adjoining areas.
"This year, the FIA has identified and arrested 31 high
profile human smugglers from Lahore, Gujranwala,
Rawalpindi and Faisalabad.
Recently, the government established the Anti-
Trafficking Unit (ATU) to stop human trafficking,
protect its victims, investigate cases, build a
database of offenders and maintain liaison with foreign
agencies. The ATU is also tasked with eradicating
legal immigration through authorized routes. END TEXT.
14. Published by ADNKI.com on Thursday, August 25:
TITLE: Turkey: Human Trafficking Under Scrutiny
BEGIN TEXT: M - her full name was not released for
security reasons - is one of the lucky ones. Her
ordeal started when she arrived in Turkey from the
Ukraine after a friend told her about a vacancy for a
job as a waitress. Instead, she was held by human
traffickers who kept her locked in a house in the town
Silivri, near Istanbul, except when they forced her out
on the streets to work as a prostitute. She was
rescued in a police operation.
M's plight is similar to that of many other would-be
immigrants that arrive in Turkey and it is the subject
of an international three-day conference at Istanbul's
Bahcesehir University that began on Thursday.
"Trafficking in Persons in Southeast Europe - a Threat
to Human Security" is a joint initiative of the
Regional Stability in South East Europe (RSSEE) Study
Group, the International Organization on Migration
(IOM) and the Center for Strategic Research at the
Turkish foreign affairs ministry.
The conference will focus on several aspects of human
trafficking ranging from the rights of victims,
especially in destination countries, temporary
residence permits and law enforcement measures that
could be taken to stop human trafficking - with a focus
on investigative techniques - to witness-protection
programs and cross-border collaboration. It will also
cover anti-trafficking measures that could be taken at
a regional level.
Turkey is a destination country for a growing number of
women from the former Soviet republics who are being
smuggled into the country primarily for sexual
exploitation, and a transit country for Middle Eastern
and Asian immigrants who wish to enter European
The Turkish government has taken a series of steps to
fight the problem, including the creation of a national
task force. But, one of the most successful measures
has been a national telephone hotline (157), financed
by the IOM's Ankara office, to help victims. It was
launched four months ago and to date police have been
able to rescue 24 women - mostly from Moldova and
Ukraine - after being alerted through phone calls. The
women were sent back to their countries.
The Geneva-based IOM, which Turkey joined in 2004, says
Ankara's anti-trafficking efforts have brought about
significant progress, but calls for increased
prosecution of traffickers.
The Development of Human Resources Association (DHRA),
A Turkish NGO specialized in social support to
uneducated and poor people, has also been helping
victims of human traffickers since 2003. It opened a
safe house/shelter for victims in December 2004.
The small building can accommodate 10 women, most of
whom are aged between 20-25, and stay at the house on
average between four and five weeks. DHRA's aim is to
provide a friendly atmosphere for the women,
rehabilitate them, and to cooperate with non-
governmental organizations in the women's home
countries to ensure their safe return.
Although there are no accurate figures available on the
number of trafficked women in Turkey, according to the
data from the Turkish interior ministry's General
Directorate for Foreigners, 3500 women were deported
for prostitution in 2001. END TEXT.
15. Published by Hurriyet in a full page supplement devoted
to human trafficking victims on Monday, August 29:
TITLE: MODERN DAY SLAVES AWAITING HELP
BEGIN TEXT: The Hotline 157 has been operating since
May 23 and it is operated by the IOM around the clock
for seven days a week. Turkey assumes coordination.
The U.S. is contributing financially with an annual
$700,000. The main goal is to help save victims. It
is providing information to those who fall in the hands
of human traffickers. It gives guidance on how to
return home safely.
Operators, who received special training, get the calls
to 157. They speak Russian, Romanian, English and
Turkish. Operators get in touch with the police or
Jandarma as necessary depending on the threat or risk.
Those who are saved with by sting operations first go
to the Foreigners Police. At this point the IOM
officials get involved and victims are sent to the
shelter of the IKGV (Human Resource Development
Foundation). They receive medical, social, and
psychological rehabilitation. After legal procedures
are over, they are sent to their countries. The IOM
officials are involved so victims do not end up in the
hands of human traffickers again. They meet them at
the airport and enroll them into vocational or
IOM officials in Turkey, Moldavia and Ukraine are
working together with NGOs.
Women who enter Turkey through Istanbul, Antalya and
Trabzon airports and who are between 18-25 are being
warned through various techniques. Brochures are
distributed in four languages. There are billboard
notices. There is a video. The IOM officials got a
film shot for this purpose. Copies were sent to 26 TV
stations through RTUK (NOTE: A television regulatory
HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY HUMAN TRAFFICKING VICTIMS?
You can notify the security forces about human
trafficking victims if certain places or individuals
look as though they are involved in human trafficking.
You can either call the hotline 157, or 156 Jandarma,
and 155 police hotlines.
- Multiple foreign or Turkish women and children are
kept in confinement in certain houses.
- They cannot establish social relations.
- They are taken out together in certain vehicles and
- When they are taken out, their guide usually is the
- In bars and discos these victims usually communicate
through a suspicious looking person.
- In general they do not carry passports. Their
guardian keeps their passports and when necessary shows
- They don't carry cash.
- They look afraid, timid and shy.
- They don't talk to those around them unless it is
- They think that there is nobody to help them.
- They have marks and bruises on their bodies.
- Since they are sold, they wear clothes showing off
NO NEED TO BE ALARMED
Murat Ersavci, Ambassador and National Coordinator in
the Fight Against Human Trafficking:
"Turkey was delayed in the fight against human
trafficking but scored important progress in a short
time. Around 40 of our institutions are working
together. We can see the progress in the annual Human
Trafficking Report by the U.S. Many important steps
were taken within the context of EU process. Turkey is
both a destination and transit country. It is not yet
facing major problems in this field. The problem has
not reached alarming levels. We are very determined in
the fight. We still have some deficiencies. The
Police and the Jandarma have an easier time since they
have the hotline 157. We made special agreements with
Georgia, Belarusian and the Ukraine to prevent human
trafficking. We are due to sign agreements with
Azerbaijan and Moldavia."
TURKEY IS BOTH A DESTINATION AND A TRANSIT COUNTRY
Selin Unal, Press Spokesperson for IOM Human
"Turkey's economic situation is better compared to
neighboring countries so it is both a destination and
transit country. We notify the Jandarma and the police
about all calls we receive. Initially it was thought
that women from East Bloc countries were willing to
serve as prostitutes. This is changing. Sometimes
when victims ask for help, they may not give a full
address or describe the location. Since they are
afraid, they talk on the phone whispering and one can
hardly understand what they are saying. Some of them
cry as they speak. Some can explain their problem
after two or three calls. But law enforcement
officials still can locate and save them."
THEIR TARGET IS 19-25 YEAR OLD WOMEN
- According to IOM, all human trafficking victims in
Turkey are women. Most of them come from Moldova,
Ukraine, Russia, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Georgia,
Romania, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Belarus.
- Until now 269 callers reached 157 and 163 of them
were reporting a crime, while 28 of them were saved,
including ten Moldovans and 10 Ukrainians, three
Russians, two Turks, one Romanian, one Ugandan and one
Belarusian. The other nine are under surveillance.
- In Turkey in 2005, a total of 125 victims were
identified, while 117, including 37 Ukrainians, 30
Moldavians, 11 Russian, 10 Uzbeks, eight Kyrgyz, seven
Romanians, five Kazakh, four Belarusian, two Georgians,
two Turkmen and one Azeri.
- When one looks at the ages of victims, one sees that
13 were between 16 - 18; 66 were between 19 - 25, 28
were between 26 - 30, eight were between 31 - 38 and
two were over 38.
- In Istanbul 46, Antalya 23, Ankara 19, Artvin eight,
Kusadasi seven, Igdir seven, Trabzon three,
Kahramanmaras one, Izmit one, Mersin one, and Urfa one
victims were determined.
- Seventy-eight of the victims entered Turkey through
Istanbul, seven from Sarp, four from Trabzon and two
TRUE STORIES FROM MODERN DAY SLAVES
- I was born in Moldova in 1974. I have three kids and
I could not meet the needs of my family. When a friend
offered me a job in Turkey, I accepted without any
hesitation. My friend made arrangements for my
passport, ticket and visa. I was told that a person
named Veysel would greet me at the Antalya Airport to
take me to the office. Veysel took away my passport.
He took me to a village house. A Moldovan woman there
told me that I was brought for prostitution. When I
refused and wanted to go back, they threatened me at
gunpoint. I was beaten. They told me that they would
kill me if I did not agree.
- I'm Romanian. I'm earning a living for my family. I
was trained as a cook. I signed an agreement to serve
as a dancer at a club in Turkey. They paid my travel
expenses. When I arrived in Turkey, they charged me
for accommodation and health services. They asked me
to work at a bar to pay my debt). I refused but they
did not let me leave. I remembered the brochure on a
hotline 157 that I saw at the Turkish consulate in
Romania. The Turkish Police and IOM saved me along
with the other Moldovan women. Other women refused to
testify against those who held us hostage thinking that
they would get money. I received assistance from IOM
to return home. I would rather starve rather than go
to Turkey again.
- I was born in Moldova in 1984. A person that my
friend and I met in Moldova told us that we could earn
a lot of money by serving as waitresses in Turkey. He
arranged the tickets and passports. We arrived in
Turkey on May 4. At the hotel that we were taken to in
Kusadasi, they charged us for the travel expenses. We
were asked to serve as prostitutes in order to pay (our
debt). We rejected. They convinced us by saying that
we would pay our debt in one month and that we would
earn a lot of money. A month later, threats began.
The La Strada helpline in my country directed me to
157. I called and the police saved us in one hour. We
will go back home with the help of IOM.
- I was born in the Ukraine in 1982. I have a
daughter who is one-and-a-half years old. After
getting a divorce from my husband, I began to live with
my mother. We were both unemployed. Somebody told me
that I could earn a lot of money by serving as a
waitress in Turkey. He arranged transportation. I
arrived with a friend. We were met at the airport and
taken shopping. They bought us nightgowns. When we
asked, "Why?" we were told that we would pay back the
travel expenses by serving as prostitutes. We refused
and wanted to go back. We were told that we did not
have any other option. When they could not sell us in
Istanbul, they took us to Ankara. We were asked to
work. We tried to flee by could not succeed. My
friend called her friend in the Ukraine for help. We
were asked to call 157. We did and the police saved
us. END TEXT.
16. Published by TurkishPress.com on Monday, August 29:
TITLE: Nigerian Interior Minister Mohamed Meets Aksu
BEGIN TEXT: Turkish Interior Ministry Abdulkadir Aksu
said on Friday that cooperation among countries in
security area was very high on the international
agenda, adding that "security issue is as important as
economic and political issues in bilateral meetings
Nigerian Minister of Internal Affairs Magaji Mohamed,
who is currently visiting Turkey, met Aksu today in
Reminding that Turkish government declared 2005
"African Year," Aksu said that Turkey is eager to
improve relations with African countries.
Aksu said that Turkey and Nigeria signed many
agreements in cultural, economic, scientific and
commercial fields, adding that he would be pleased by
the signing of a security cooperation agreement between
the two countries.
"We share Turkey's views on security," Mohamed said
stressing that Nigeria had many things to learn from
Turkey as regards security, particularly about the
fight against illegal migration, child and human
Inviting Aksu to visit Nigeria, Mohamed added that the
signing of the security cooperation agreement between
the two countries would further improve bilateral
relations. END TEXT.
17. Published by Realtime News NewsBlaze
(www.newsblaze.com) on Tuesday, August 30:
TITLE: Crossfire War: Europe; Turkey-Greece-Half Moon
Joint Exercise-Regional Imp
BEGIN TEXT: Ostensibly under the command of NATO
Kosovo Force (KFOR), Turkish and Greek battalions
conducted a joint exercise called Half Moon.
The 62 Turkish and Greek soldiers were under the
command of Turkish Captain Ahmet Dener and Greek Major
Konstantinos Alexopulos. The three day maneuvers were
conducted on the check points formed on the border with
Albania and in the Dragas region of Kosovo. The
purpose of the exercise is to guarantee the security of
Kosovo. The operations included: preventing illegal
crossings, weapons drug and human trafficking.
The Greek soldiers stayed in the Turkish Barracks of
Sultan Murat I in Prizren.
Sultan Murat I's reign, from 1362?-1389 was a period of
rapid conquest of the Balkans by the Ottoman Empire.
What is not widely known is that during the first
Balkan wars from 1991-95 there were Greeks who fought
alongside Serbs. The precise number Is not known but
Athens probably supported them since Greece and Serbia
followed the same Orthodox ritual.
At the time I never would have imagined the day would
come when Greek and Turkish units of any size conduct
joint maneuvers but that was before the 78-day bombing
of Serbia by NATO in 1999. A couple of years later the
news announced that Greece and Turkey conducted a joint
peace mission to the Middle East. Athens has been
giving more of an audience to Turkey and the Middle
East ever since this site has been chronicled.
For Tehran and its Expediency Council this is another
situation they will take advantage of in Tehran's
attempt to remove the West as a major force in world
affairs. Athens is accepted by Ankara, Tehran, Riyadh
and other Islamic capitals who would not mind if Greek
units beat the Jihad to Vienna.
Brussels is still under the illusion that Greece
remains under the command of NATO, but that is true in
name only. NATO defeated itself when it agreed to the
most regressive decision in modern history-the division
of Yugoslavia in the name of the New World Order. It
has unleashed Old World Chaos. END TEXT.
18. Published by The New Anatolian on Saturday, August 27:
TITLE: Nigerian minister's visit works to build ties
BEGIN TEXT: Security issues are as important as
economic and political ones in international contacts,
said Interior Minister Abdulkadir Aksu on Friday.
In a visit from Nigerian Interior Minister Magaji
Muhammed and an accompanying Nigerian delegation, Aksu
maintained that cooperation on security matters is a
priority in international relations.
Aksu stated that he wishes to develop relations with
countries as part of the project "Open to Africa,"
launched in 1998, and added that said that Muhammed's
visit will add impetus to further contacts and
cooperation between the security institutions of both
countries. He stated that he'd like a contract on
security cooperation to be signed by both interior
Muhammed referred to the economic cooperation pact
signed in 1988 between Turkey and Nigeria and said that
it had improved Turkish-Nigerian relations. The
Nigerian minister added that he would particularly like
to benefit from Turkey's experience in the issues of
illegal migration and human trafficking. END TEXT.
19. Published by Milliyet.com.tr on Wednesday, August 31:
TITLE: Through a sting operation, they were saved from
a prostitution gang's hands
BEGIN TEXT: Under operation "Eagle" three Moldovan and
Ukrainian university students were saved from forced
prostitution by calling the 157 Human Trafficking
Victims Rescue Line after they came to Mersin with the
promise of modeling jobs. Five people have been
arrested in connection. According to L.C. (23), who is
a medical student from Moldova, she and two of her
friends were forced into prostitution. She explained
that they had been sold to men for 11 months in the
Kizkalesi district of Mersin. Upon the call, the
police, raided hotels in the Kizkalesi region. During
the operation that lasted for four days, university
students L.C., Ukrainian citizens Y.C. (21) and S.B.
(21) were saved from the hands of a prostitution
During the operation, C.B. (24), hotel manager A.A.
(42), N.D. (43), I.D. (30) and C.N. (37) were detained.
The court put them under arrest. Meanwhile, an arrest
warrant was issued for M.D.
Authorities said that the prostitution network in
Mersin was transferring money to some people in the
Ukraine and that they seized copies of banking
transactions. The three women were brought to Turkey
with promises of serving as models and working in the
tourism sector. Each was paid $2,500. After
completing the necessary paperwork, the three women
will be sent back to their countries. END TEXT.
20. Published by the Turkish Daily News on Wednesday,
TITLE: Aid organizations turn to the telephone to help
victims of sex
BEGIN TEXT: Aid groups trying to help women who fall
prey to international sex traffickers are turning to
the telephone in an effort to free the victims from the
gangs' clutches or simply open their eyes to the risks.
The Geneva-based International Organization for
Migration (IOM), working alongside local groups in a
host of countries, has stepped up attempts to stem the
flow of people trafficked into prostitution or other
forced labor-approximately 150,000 a year from Eastern
The odds appear stacked against aid groups-the IOM has
been able to help just 9,000 victims since 1999-but
they are constantly reinventing their tactics.
"We have to work all the different angles at the same
time," said Richard Danziger, head of the IOM's counter
"We have to get away from constantly playing catch-up
to being a step ahead of the traffickers."
Young women in former communist nations, confronted by
grinding poverty and social breakdown, are all to
readily duped by the traffickers.
The organization has spurred hotlines in countries such
as Moldova and Ukraine to help trafficking victims-and
It is also behind lines in countries where gangs'
victims end up, such as Turkey. Similar lines exist in
The IOM trains people from local charities who work the
phones in often-shoestring operations, and brings
together hotline staff from different countries to
share their experiences.
It advises staff how to cope with anything from prank
calls to outright threats from the traffickers.
"Security is a major issue when you're working in this
field," said Danziger, noting that one counselor in
Macedonia has had to move house three times.
It can cost $50,000 a year to run a hotline, and the
IOM also drums up finance from donor governments.
Hotlines are part of the attempts to show potential
victims how to decode the all-too-enticing small ads,
which offer jobs abroad.
"A man told my girlfriend he could find us work in
Turkey as waitresses and we would be able to make good
money," said a 23-year-old Ukrainian unemployed single
"The man arranged our travel to Turkey. We were met by
a Turkish man at Istanbul airport."
"He said because of our travel expenses, we were in
debt and had to work as prostitutes to pay it off. We
refused but he said we had no alternative."
The woman, whose testimony is among others collected by
IOM, was freed after contacting a friend, who managed
to call a hotline in Moldova that in turn directed him
to its Turkish counterpart-leading to a raid by Turkish
Ten Ukrainian women were freed in Turkey earlier this
month, after years of prostitution, torture and
imprisonment in a basement, thanks to a tip-off to the
country's "157" hotline from one who used a mobile
phone belonging to a client.
Launched in May, the hotline is staffed by Russian,
Romanian and Turkish speakers.
Turkish custom officials and aid workers hand out
leaflets at the border promoting the hotline, focusing
in particular on young women who fit the profile of a
The focus of hotlines is not gang busting, Danziger
said: "The central concern is always the well-being of
While the IOM is always pleased when victims are ready
to testify in court, it walks a fine line.
Hotline staff are barred from passing on information to
authorities without a victim's permission, except if
they learn of an immediate threat to someone's life.
Aid groups are deeply aware of the risks for women who
come forward, whether violence by the traffickers,
deportation home, or stigma in their communities when
Danziger said that rather than preaching to women who
are desperate to improve their lives, hotline staff
explain how to minimize the dangers-as basic as never
handing over your passport and making sure your family
knows where you are going. END TEXT.