Trafficking – (In) human acts
“The room is cold and dark. She measures it every day, with small steps, along with the other girls. Inside there is a dirty couch with dried blood, a table and two chairs. A naked light bulb illuminates the night and a locked door separates them from the unknown.
They have been here for five days, in this closed room that smells of skin, urine and fear. The other two girls speak different languages and none understand hers. They are only signaling to one another with their fingers and by repeating a word aloud, which may mean help, or I am hungry, in each of the girls’ languages, they try to accompany their terror and calm the darkness.
The girls are very young, but she is the youngest. The older is about sixteen, very tall and beautiful. Her hair has the color of the grain that had been burnt under the sun and the eyes of a frightened falcon. She looks like a doll who everyone would like to own. The other girl, fourteen years old, has dark skin, but not as dark as hers and cries incessantly, with thick tears that freeze her meager cheeks.
She is only twelve years old and cannot understand why she is here. Neither why the parted her from her mom and her little brother.
They had come into a large truck, with many strangers, traveling for many hours. The truck was hot. She slept in the arms of her mom, with her brother, feeling relieved that they were leaving the war that had taken her dad away. Then they boarded into a large boat, as mom said, but she has not realized it, because she didn’t see the sea, just another truck, bigger, that was swallowing, them until they finished their journey.
After the journey, they downloaded them from the truck and it was night. It rained frozen raindrops, when they separated them. She cried as hard as she could, to let her stay with her mom. Her mother cried out her name and was crying, her eyes were running red blood when a man pulled her hard by her arm and pushed her into a big car.
What would they do now? Where is her mum, where is her little brother?
The door opens and a woman, a different one each time, brings food, bread and soup. The night falls again in the small cell and the girls will be squeezed onto the dirty sofa and will be covered with their breaths, hoping that when the next time the door opens, they will be free. ”
This dark history ends for us here, but not for the heroine. Is it the place that troubles you? The location?
You have the impression that this is happening: a. someplace far away b. Sometimes c. In the movies.
Do you think that slavery has been abolished?
Think again. Trading of human beings or trafficking in human beings, is the international term.
Slaves grow our food, produce our clothes, and weave our rugs.
Slavery exists as a mighty and very lucrative business. The figures are appealing. Over 27 million people live in slavery, far more than any other time in recorded human history. According to the Government of I.PA., 600.000-800.000 women and children were bought and sold internationally in 2013 and 50% of the victims were children. Children, of whom the largest share, were forced to turn to prostitution, as reported by UNICEF.
Human trafficking refers to movement, collection and harboring people through threat or use of force for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation includes prostitution, forced labor, servitude or the removal of body organs. Human trafficking is not only born of poverty and the unequal distribution of wealth, but it is a genuine child of an ideology, that divides mankind into upper and lower social, physical and spiritual people. Women and children, as vulnerable groups, have the highest rates of victimization for both the sex trade, and also for forced labor and other forms that it takes effect.
Despite international prohibitions, sexual abuse of women and children are standard practice, both during peaceful and wartime, while the perpetrators remain unpunished.
It is estimated that the profits generated by trafficking, are comparable to those of drug trafficking and weapons.
20% of trafficking victims worldwide are children. Innocent children are forced into begging, child prostitution. Little girls sold as brides. Boys learn to kill before they even learn to read, girls become prostitutes, before they become women. The mentality and discrimination based on gender, are responsible as well as poverty is.
The exploitation of children is the most inhuman aspect of a crime, a shame for all mankind.
Greece is known as “the center of human trafficking in Europe.” It is a key transit country and destination for victims, and is the main entrance to the European Union, brings together 90% of cases of illegal immigration in Europe. Trafficking is a well hidden crime in our country, most citizens ignore the harsh human rights violations happening in their own city. We look around us daily, but not actually ‘see’. We walk between them carefree and discomfort in their image.
Next time, look more carefully.
Look through the pale eyes of a child begging at the traffic lights, the cold fear on the neck of the woman you pay to sleep with, the smell of panic, in the palm of the little girl that some ‘uncle’ pushes violently into a luxury car…