Cuba denounces US accusations of child trafficking

News from Cuba | Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Statement by the Head of the North America Department at the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs Josefina Vidal, from Juventud Rebelde

The inclusion of Cuba in the worst of the categories included in the US State Departments report on countries that “do not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is making no significant efforts to do so” is a shameful defamation that profoundly offends the Cuban people and once again ignores the exemplary efforts made by our country in the protection of children, young people and women.

Once again, we forcefully reject the inclusion of Cuba in the fraudulent report by the US State Department.

Cuba is neither a point of origin, transit or destination for human trafficking. In Cuba, minors are not subject to sexual exploitation and there is no forced child labor. On the contrary, Cuban law, the policies implemented by the Cuban government, and the work carried out by our institutions in this area place Cuba among the leading countries in the region in terms of exhibiting the most effective regulations and advanced mechanisms for preventing and combating human trafficking, and taking care and protecting children and other vulnerable sectors of society.

The allegations included in the report that state that there is no information available on Cuban activities in this regard are unfounded. The US government is aware of this. Although Cuba does not recognize this unilateral and discriminatory report, it is important to make clear that the US government, as many other governments, has up-to-date information on the systematic work conducted by numerous Cuban institutions to prevent and combat human trafficking. The United States has simply chosen to ignore these facts one more time.

The use of this platform to try to discredit Cuba flies in the face of the legitimate efforts made the world over to eliminate this criminal practice that affects millions of people. Their obsession to justify their failed and cruel policy of the US blockade of Cuba is the only explanation behind the arbitrary inclusion of Cuba on this list.

The report by the US State Department deliberately distorts the Cuban reality and covers up the magnitude and impunity of criminal organizations engaged in human trafficking in the United States, the main destination for most of the victims of this scourge.

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