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Wednesday 16.08.2017 | Name days: Astrīda, Astra
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Nearly 2,300 people live in conditions of slavery in Latvia

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUNearly 35.8 million people in the world live in conditions of slavery. In Latvia, however, this proportion is nearly 2,300 people, according to a modern global slavery index compiled from 167 countries.

Data of the Global Slavery Index 2014 states that the largest number of enslaved people is found in India – 14.29 million. Mauritania has the largest number of enslaved people in relation to the country’s total population – 4%. Slavery in this African country has deep roots in history.

This index was compiled by Australia-based human rights defenders Walk Free Foundation, which was founded by Australian philanthropist Andrew Forrest and his wife Nicole in 2013.

Latvia is on the 40th place in this index. According to researchers 2,300 people live in modern slavery in Latvia.

In Lithuania, on the other hand, there are approximately 10,600 enslaved people, with the country being on the 82nd place in the rating. Estonia is on the 86th place, with 4,800 people in slavery.

According to estimates of authors of this index, Latvia’s proportion of enslaved people is equal to 0.11% of the population and those of Estonia and Lithuania are equal to 0.36%.

«There is an assumption that slavery is an issue from a bygone era. Or that it only exists in countries ravaged by war and poverty,»- says Andrew Forrest.

«These findings show that modern slavery exists in every country. We are all responsible for the most appalling situations where modern slavery exists and the desperate misery it brings upon our fellow human beings,» – he added.

Authors of the index note that modern-day slavery secures production of at least 122 kinds of products in 58 countries of the world. According to data from the International Labour Organization, profits from forced labour reach EUR 120 billion.

Although there are anti-slavery laws in the country, the largest proportion of enslaved people is found in Mauritania. Uzbekistan is on the second place, where more than one million people, including children, are forced to harvest cotton every autumn season.

People are often sent to countries of the Near East, like Qatar, from Africa and Asia. They are often promised well-paid jobs in either construction or servants.

The most rigorous fighters against slavery include Netherlands, Sweden, USA, Australia, Switzerland, Ireland, Norway, UK, Georgia and Austria.

Although forced labour is less present in Europe than it is on other continents, nearly 566,000 people exist in conditions of modern slavery, including as human trafficking victims and forced workers at marijuana plantations in Ireland and forced beggars in France.

«70% of identified victims became victims of human trafficking with intent of sexual exploitation; 19% became victims of forced labour,» – as mentioned in the report.

Among European countries, the 15th place in this index is held by Moldova, where 0.9% of the population lives in slavery.

Russia is on the 32nd place, China is on the 109th place.

Iceland has the lowest number of people who live in slavery – 0.007% of the population. Ireland is on the second place from the end, followed by Luxembourg and New Zealand. Norway is at the very end.

Authors of the index say it was compiled based on the definition of ‘modern slavery’, practices close to slavery (forced labour, child exploitation, human trafficking, etc).

Ref: 102.109.109.6565


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