The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Ministry of Justice in Vietnam organised a seminar in the northern city of Hai Phong on Feb 20 and 21, to discuss ways to counter child sex trafficking.
The seminar was held within the framework of a project funded by the International Development Fund of Australia for the period 2010-2014.
UNODC, World Vision and INTERPOL are jointly conducting a fact finding mission in Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia to explore what ways the UN can fight illegal child sex trafficking by people in the West.
Representatives at the seminar put forth their ideas and opinions related to the trafficking of children for sex and the international problem of cross-border transportation of children for sexual purposes.
It is important to note that the above countries not only face an influx of international sex trafficking cases, but are also having to deal with their own homegrown problem of interstate sex trafficking of minors.
Although comprehensive research in documenting the number of children engaged in prostitution in these countries is lacking, it is difficult to cope with this social evil as Vietnam’s criminal law is lacking in regulations against child sex crimes.
Many NA legislators have demanded some changes in regulations in accordance with the UN Protocol on children’s rights and international norms, such as maturity age in Vietnam is 16 and in the world it is 18.
They have also urged the National Assembly to immediately adopt the Draft Law on Child Protection.
In 2011, it is estimated that about 44 children were victims of commercial sexual harassment in Hai Phong City alone.