Cablegate: Guizhou Human Trafficking Trends Mirror Those of Yunnan,

DE RUEHCN #0293/01 3420946
P 080946Z DEC 09




E.O. 12958: N/A


CHENGDU 00000293 001.2 OF 002

1. (U) This cable contains sensitive but unclassified
information - not for distribution on the Internet.

2. (SBU) Summary: Human trafficking patterns in Guizhou are very
similar to neighboring Yunnan province, and are dominated by
forced marriages and illegal adoptions, Guizhou Public Security
Bureau (PSB) officials told Consul General. Guizhou is both a
source for women/children for other provinces in China, and a
transit point or final destination for trafficked women from
other countries and other Chinese provinces, especially Yunnan.
Among children, boys are trafficked most often due to cultural
preferences for sons, however trafficking of young girls is on
the rise. To combat the problem, the Guizhou Anti-TIP Office
has carried out a series of campaigns, most recently in April
2009, which have helped to improve the situation. Like Yunnan,
no nexus exists between human traffickers and drug dealers;
however, heroin use is a serious problem in Guizhou, as its HIV
from shared needles. Local gang activity is only small and
disorganized, PSB officials claim. End Summary.

3. (SBU) Guizhou TIP cases have been on the decline in recent
years, PSB Deputy Director Zhao Xiang told CG recently in
Guiyang, Guizhou's capital. Zhao currently heads the anti-TIP
office of the Guizhou PSB -- an office established in the 1970s
to combat the then growing problem. Guizhou is considered an
origin point ("guaichudi") for women/children who are trafficked
to other provinces throughout China. Guizhou is also a transit
point for trafficking victims, due in large part to its western
border with Yunnan province and proximity to Southeast Asia.
Since 2005, Guizhou PSB officials have begun to see cases of
victims being trafficked to Guizhou as their final destination
point. Like Yunnan Province, Guizhou tends to see its residents
trafficked to other Chinese provinces, instead of overseas
destinations (ref A). (Note: TIP definitions are somewhat
different in China compared to Palermo Protocol standards, with
neither forced labor nor trafficking of men considered human
trafficking. A child is defined as a minor under the age of 14,
not 18. In addition, illegal adoptions are counted towards
China's human trafficking statistics, unlike international
standards. Ref A and B. End Note.)

Forced Marriages, Illegal Adoptions, and Forced Prostitution

--------------------------------------------- ---------------

4. (SBU) Like Yunnan, trafficking of Guizhou residents is driven
by two primary purposes: forced marriages and illegal adoptions.
Often women are lured to an area by the incentive of job
opportunities. These women are then forced to marry, imprisoned
within their new homes, and then forced to become pregnant.
After giving birth, many women decide to stay with their
husbands to raise their children. Zhao commented that at times
women become comfortable in the homes to which they are
trafficked, in which case the PSB lets the victim decide whether
or not to return to their original homes. In a smaller
percentage of cases, women are trafficked and forced into
prostitution. So far, the Guizhou PSB has yet to discover a
case of a Guizhou resident being trafficked abroad.

5. (SBU) Among children, boys remain the primary target for
trafficking for two main reasons. One is the traditional
Chinese belief that boys continue the family line
("chuanzongjiedai"), the other that boys can be used for farm
labor. Typically, boys trafficked in Guizhou are from rural
areas or are the children of migrant laborers working in urban

6. (SBU) Recently, the Guizhou PSB has found instances of young
girls being trafficked to other provinces for illegal adoptions.
Zhao declined to provide an explanation for this new
phenomenon. (Comment: A Guizhou Foreign Affairs official later
commented that given the explosion in housing prices, parents
have become increasingly worried about the costs of raising a

CHENGDU 00000293 002.2 OF 002

son. In traditional Chinese culture, the groom's parents were
expected to purchase a house for the new couple. While this
tradition has weakened considerably, sons are increasingly
perceived as a financial burden, leading more parents to prefer
daughters. End Comment.)

Guizhou Government Initiatives to Combat Trafficking

--------------------------------------------- -------

7. (SBU) In May 2008, the Guizhou government issued its
"Implementation Plan for China National Action Plan on Combating
Trafficking in Women and Children." Under this plan, and
consistent with the central government's 2009 reforms, annual
promotion assessments for local government and PSB officials now
take into account anti-TIP achievements. Perhaps in part due to
this new plan, Guizhou has begun to crack down on government
officials' complicity in trafficking. For example, a Social
Security official was recently convicted for involvement in
trafficking activity (ref B).

8. (SBU) The Guizhou PSB has also started building a TIP
database, including DNA records, to coordinate with PSB offices
throughout China, Zhao said. He expressed hope that better
record-keeping throughout China would help to combat the highly
prevalent inter-province trafficking problem. The Guizhou PSB
has also stepped up its cooperation with other provinces; a
recent combined operation with the PSB in Mianyang, Sichuan
rescued 16 deaf and dumb women.

9. (SBU) The GPSB launched an anti-trafficking campaign in April
2009. Thus far, 44 trafficked children and 46 trafficked women
have been rescued in Guizhou. In addition, 107
trafficking-related cases have been handled, 18 trafficking
gangs punished, and 179 trafficking criminals arrested.
Traffickers and heads of trafficking gangs face severe penalties
up to and including the death penalty. During the recent
campaign, 14 women and children were rescued in Guiyang. In
Bijie, Guizhou Province, seven trafficked women with mental
illness and another six children were rescued. Upon their
rescue, victims are usually returned to their homes. Like
Yunnan, no shelter has been set up for victims; however, Zhao
stated it is being considered.

Human Trafficking Gangs Unrelated to Drug Problems

--------------------------------------------- -----

10. (SBU) Guizhou has a significant drug problem, particularly
among younger, unemployed people, Zhao said. Particularly
problematic are heroin and opium, which are typically imported
from the Golden Triangle via Yunnan. In the 1980s, drug use was
most prevalent among rural populations; however, urban drug use
has recently been on the rise. According to a 2006 NIH study,
injectable drug use remains the most common practice, leading to
higher HIV prevalence in Guizhou than most other Chinese
provinces. As in Yunnan, Zhao commented that there are no links
between drug gangs and human trafficking gangs in Guiyang (ref

11. (SBU) Zhao went on to say that gang activity in Guizhou is
small and disorganized, not at all resembling an organized,
criminal underground ("heishe"). He commented that the Guizhou
PSB cracks down on criminal activity before it can become
organized. (Comment: Officials are reluctant to comment on
organized criminal activity; however, we suspect it is at least
an emerging problem in Guizhou. End Comment.)

© Scoop Media

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