ASIA/CAMBODIA - Sexual exploitation, forced labor, poverty: cause of death for many children
Phnom Penh (Agenzia Fides) - The fate of many girls in Southeast Asia is marked by poverty that leads to sexual exploitation. To cope with this emergency, periodically, the Spanish NGO Anesvad promotes a campaign to recover these young girls and trains them, to give them opportunities for a decent job. On the one hand in order to earn a living, girls prostitute themselves spontaneously. On the other hand criminal groups exploit them and their families sell them to survive. Often the girls organize and prostitute themselves, creating independent networks. This is what the coordinator of the Cambodian organization "Our Home" said.
According to the Pontifical Mission Societies, there are 14 million orphans due to AIDS. In addition, half of the 600 million poor in the world, 130 million do not go to school, 180 million are undernourished, 250 million are exploited at work and one million children fall in the net of the sex trade. It is estimated that there are 400 million children slaves of exploitation. Among these there are young children who work in the fields, in the mines, industries and as slaves of landowners; half a million child soldiers and about 2 million children are sexually exploited. Finally, a child out of seven, born in the poorest countries, is destined to die before the age of 5. 250 000 children die each year, mostly for food shortages that weaken them, reduce their weight and growth, making them more vulnerable to diseases. In developing countries, according to the study carried out by Anesvad, these children are exposed to a high risk of infectious diseases such as diarrhea, acute respiratory illness, malaria and measles. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 18/12/2012)
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