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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 March 2006, 11:11 GMT
Kinnock sex trade traffic warning
From a police video of the raids in south Wales
Officers investigating trafficking raided brothels in south Wales
Wales MEP Glenys Kinnock is demanding tougher action on gangs who traffic women for sex in the run-up to the World Cup in Germany this summer.

The MEP said the trade was the "fastest growing criminal activity" and said the issues around it must be addressed.

There have been warnings of an influx of prostitutes into Germany during the 2006 football competition.

Mrs Kinnock said police in the UK need to act against gangs which traffic women to Germany for the sex trade.

Speaking on International Women's Day on Wednesday, the Labour MEP said a helpline was needed so women in danger "could find someone to turn to".

She said: "Human trafficking and forced prostitution are modern day forms of slavery.

"Between 800,000 and two million people, the majority of them women, are trafficked each year, often for commercial sexual exploitation."

Glenys Kinnock
Mrs Kinnock said more needs to be done to stamp out the activity

Health officials in Berlin, preparing for an influx of football supporters, are planning to give out 100,000 condoms and leaflets offering men advice on safe sex.

Mrs Kinnock said the UK needed to take "tough action" on gangs that traffic women into Germany to work as prostitutes during the World Cup.

"At the current trafficking rates, thousands of women - many of them under the age of consent - will arrive in Germany over the next few months to meet what is clearly a demand for paid sex during the World Cup competition," she added.

As well as an international helpline for victims, Mrs Kinnock said the European Union should come up with a logo telling people to beware of trafficking.

"There are so many people, particularly in Eastern European countries like the Ukraine, where they have very few education and employment opportunities, where they face terrible discrimination and they really are very, very vulnerable indeed."

Referring to recent raids by South Wales Police, Mrs Kinnock said she was pleased officers "so active" in catching traffickers.

Specialist training

In December two men were jailed for being part of a gang who "bought" a Lithuanian woman in London for 5,000 and forced her to work as a prostitute in Cardiff.

And last week nine people were arrested and later bailed after a series of police raids on brothels and massage parlours in Swansea, Cardiff and Bridgend.

"It is very close to us and we need to pay much more attention that we do to it," added Mrs Kinnock.

She said traffickers had to be made aware that they do not get treated lightly, and police had to be given specialist training in dealing with the crime.




SEE ALSO:
Forces target human traffickers
21 Feb 06 |  Scotland



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