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Child Trafficking Rampant in Iran

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A new special report by Al-Arabiya has exposed the problem of child trafficking in Iran. The report, part of the news outlet's "Inside Iran" series, says that children are sold for $150 on the streets of Iran.

There are an estimated 200,000 children living on the streets in Iran. Those who are trafficked are frequently picked up from the streets and forced into child labor, begging or organ trafficking.

Those most frequently trafficked are young girls under the age of 18 from rural areas.

The U.S. State Department ranks Iran as "Tier 3" for human trafficking, the worse lowest tier.

Tier 3 is reserved for countries whose legislation does not meet international standards and whose governments are making no effort bring their countries in line.

In its 2014 report, the State Department recorded, “Iran is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor.”

It writes, “In Tehran, the number of teenage girls in prostitution reportedly continues to increase” while “there are 35,000-50,000 children—some as young as four or five years old—forced by their parents or well-organized criminal networks to beg in the streets of Tehran; some of these children are reportedly forced to sell drugs.”

The reports found that the Iranian regime was “unable or unwilling to consistently implement and enforce existing anti-trafficking laws due to a lack of political will and widespread corruption, including corruption within the security services and judiciary.”

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David Harris

David Harris is the editor in chief of Clarion Project.