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Cablegate: Singapore Premiere of Traffic: An Mtv Exit Special

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DE RUEHGP #2161 3400833
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 060833Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY SINGAPORE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4548
INFO RUCNASE/ASEAN MEMBER COLLECTIVE
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0499
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI 1903
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 4163
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 5788
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 1399

UNCLAS SINGAPORE 002161

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KWMN PHUM SOCI ELAB SN
SUBJECT: SINGAPORE PREMIERE OF TRAFFIC: AN MTV EXIT SPECIAL

1. (U) MTV-Asia hosted the Singapore premiere of "Traffic: An
MTV EXIT (End Exploitation and Trafficking) Special," a joint
project of the U.S. Agency for International Development, MTV
Networks and the MTV Europe Foundation. "Traffic" is a
documentary about human trafficking, hosted by UNICEF
Goodwill Ambassador Lucy
Liu. The documentary includes a look at Singapore's
Humanitarian Organization for Migration Economics (HOME), a
shelter for mistreated and abused foreign workers in
Singapore. "MTV networks offer a unique opportunity to
reach hundreds of millions of people in a region that
accounts for many of the world's trafficking victims,"
Oliver Carduner, Regional Mission Director for USAID in Asia
told the premiere audience on November 20. DCM, Public
Affairs Counselor and Poloff participated in the event. The
documentary was broadcast on MTV Asia every day through the
last week of November, and MTV EXIT has established a website
for easy information access. MTV Asia DJ Denise Keller
noted, "Raising awareness of the issue is the first step in
ending this trade in human beings."

2. (U) Simon Goff, MTV EXIT Campaign Director explained to
the audience and press how MTV became involved in the fight
against exploitation and trafficking. "Many of the victims
fall within MTV's 15-29 age demographic, which makes the MTV
EXIT campaign critically important to MTV's audience," he
said.

3. (U) Bridget Lew, founder and president of HOME, spoke
about her experiences in combating trafficking in the
region. She shared with the audience her belief that we can
each be part of the solution and encouraged viewers of
the program to speak up when they see domestic workers
mistreated and to call an anti-trafficking organization to
make them aware of problems. While noting that HOME receives
no GOS funding, Lew said that HOME works closely
with the GOS to repatriate foreign workers who seek shelter
with HOME and to pursue prosecution of abusive employers.

4. (U) Saleemah Ismail, President of the National Committee
for UNIFEM, Singapore, reiterated Lew's call for action.
Over the past couple of years, Ismail has advocated for the
Government of Singapore to pass legislation to criminalize
child sex tourism, which was included this year in a a
comprehensive revision of the
Penal Code. Ismail told the audience, "We were told it would
take five years to enact such a law; but look at
what we were able to accomplish because we didn't know it was
impossible." Ismail also urged that citizens of ASEAN
countries use the inclusion of human rights in the ASEAN
Charter as a way to hold ASEAN governments accountable for
their human rights records.

Visit Embassy Singapore's Classified website:
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eap/singapore/ind ex.cfm
HERBOLD

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