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Estimated 27 Million Men, Women And Children In Slavery Around The World - 2002-05-27

A new report says as many as twenty-seven million people have been forced into slavery around the world. The report from the group Anti-Slavery International says the problem is a result of poverty, vulnerability and lack of political will.

The release of the report coincides with a meeting in Geneva this week of the United Nations Working Group on Contemporary Forms of Slavery. Anti-Slavery Deputy Director David Ould says the group is calling on governments to do more to end the practice.

The report says, for example, that the government of Sudan still has not taken “adequate steps to end raiding and slavery,” while in Mauritania there’s been “little action to secure slaves’ release or punish those who use slaves.” The report also says millions of girls around the world work as domestics and are “vulnerable to physical and verbal abuse.” It says as a result, many are forced into sex work.

The Anti-Slavery International report also describes problems in Pakistan, Brazil and the United Arab Emirates. English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua spoke with David Ould.