News / Asia

Rights Activists Say China's Gender Ratio Contributes to Human Trafficking

A young boy holds up a photo of his mother as he joins family members wearing posters describing the woman as missing from her home in Xian, northern China's Shaanxi province, as they launch a campaign to locate her (File Photo).
A young boy holds up a photo of his mother as he joins family members wearing posters describing the woman as missing from her home in Xian, northern China's Shaanxi province, as they launch a campaign to locate her (File Photo).

Multimedia

Human rights activists say women and children in China and surrounding countries are bought and sold in China. They are victims of either forced labor or sexual exploitation.  Some women and girls are also forced into marriages.

"These are the faces of the boys and girls who have disappeared in China without a trace," says Chai Ling, founder of the group All Girls Allowed, who has been working with
volunteer organizations to promote awareness and help families find their children.  She says many of the missing are kidnapped and sold.

"The brothels, they buy the women and girls into sex slavery," said Chai Ling. "That's a huge market out there. There are then individual families who want to make sure they have wives for their own son."

Traditional Chinese culture places more value on a boy.  When they grow up, the men are expected to live with and care for their parents, take a wife and continue the family name.  "When a woman is pregnant with a girl, " Chai says, "Some families are taking this matter into their own hands by selectively aborting, abandoning and selling their baby girls.  There are approaching 40 million young men inside China who will not find a bride. So as a result of that, sex trafficking against girls and women are becoming a huge problem inside China."

Human rights activists say China's one-child policy has contributed to the uneven gender ratio fueling the problem.

Chai says some missing girls may end up being sold to a family as a child bride. Boys can also be trafficked for families without male heirs.  

But volunteers are slowly making progress.

All Girls Allowed says a three-year-old girl, named Little Bean, was kidnapped last June and sold. With the help of volunteers who put out flyers with her picture,  she was found seven months later and reunited with her parents. 

Andrea Bertone, the director of human trafficking.org, says the gender imbalance in China is affecting surrounding countries.

"There is a large number of women who are brought in from Vietnam, Laos and North Korea for forced marriage situations and they're mainly going into the rural areas,"said Bertone. "Women or children who are being brought from neighboring countries across the borders to either work or be in a marriage in the rural areas, we're talking about a smaller network of people who know how to navigate the borders and be able to pay off the border officials pretty easily."

Bertone says traffickers inside China could either belong to small networks or more organized crime syndicates.

While a few are caught, the demand for women and children continues and the problem of human trafficking is expected to grow in China and expand throughout the region.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid