The Issue of Human Trafficking to North Korea

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First and foremost, human trafficking expands across the globe to men, women, and children, it doesn’t matter the gender, age or the status of your social class. However; human trafficking affects women the most, in regards to serious foul violations impacting universal human rights that distracts North Korean women freedom of will and choice. The problem arises when human traffickers have a purpose of imposing labor and sexual exploitation among different varieties of women, especially in North Korea. The overall problem of this issue stated by Yu, S. (2017) “From seeking refuge to slavery”, occurs when North Korean women are being trafficked crossing into China and the women are frequently sold to unwealthy farmers and sometimes are forced into cyber pornography. This common issue exists in North Korea, trafficking is steadily increasing upon their country as a societal problem affecting the lives of millions of people and robbing them of their self-worth. Now, there are many involvements within trafficking, they more so target women who are North Korean or Chinese. Apart from this, poverty alone in North Korea can become the starting point to trafficking, but when combined with other dangerous factors, this begins to lead to higher risk for women who are trafficked. Some of those other factors include: corruption, weak government, lack of access to education or jobs, family dysfunction and lack of human rights. Sources from CNN, Berlinger, J. (2019) “Report claims thousands of North Korean women sold into sex slavery in China.”, explains information from 2014 United Nations aid groups have reported tens of thousands of North Koreans live in China as refugees who try to escape this lifestyle of sex slavery.

Different Perspectives About the Problem:

Davis, K. (2006). Brides, Bruises and the Border: The Trafficking of North Korean Women into China, describes the significant causes of human trafficking in North Korea, this impacts the increasing poverty in North Korea trafficking. North Korean women who try to pursue better lives in China, become victims of cross-border trafficking through a variety of explanations.

Furthermore; this issue continues to grow, one of the reasons human trafficking is happening is because some women are kidnapped and forced to work in the highly explicit sex industry. Not everyone believes that human trafficking is a problem, North Koreans are exposed to harsh employment and they don’t have the freedom to leave. The Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) doesn’t necessarily take the precautions of human trafficking as an important matter. According to USDOS – US Department of State, 2019 Trafficking in Persons Report: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, their government did not supply law enforcement data; there are no known prosecutions or sentencing of traffickers having conspiracies in trafficking offenses. Moreover, North Koreans who are at risk are returned by Chinese authorities and they are immediately sent to interrogation centers. At times, their government subjected them to force labor and abortions. Facts from Curtin, M. (2018). The UN, North Korea and the Scourge of Human Trafficking; prove that the International Labor Organization estimated there were 40.3 million human trafficking victims worldwide and assumptions have been made that human trafficking is a $150 billion global industry. The opinions remain biased, Bigio, J. & Vogelstein, R . (2019) “Human trafficking isn’t just morally repugnant. It’s also a security threat.” express that human trafficking is not only a human rights issue it’s also a security challenge. As also stated in their article, law enforcement should be better trained to identify trafficking victims and traffickers should be held accountable, in which I agree with this statement.

Possible Existing Solutions:

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In relations to human trafficking, Lemke, R. K. (2019). 7 THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT HUMAN TRAFFICKING, AND 3 WAYS TO HELP, suggest that in order to fix this problem is to help prevent people from being trafficked in the first place. And the people of North Korea should speak up if they witness or suspect human trafficking or other forms of exploitation. However; the refugees who have already experienced these situations should find safety and receive emergency assistance and trauma counseling. These suggestions can help build solutions for human trafficking, it’s highly important to create outlets for these victims. This will keep them off the streets, avoid unsafe situations, provide jobs and perhaps gain respect for human rights. Based on these sources from my research, human trafficking can potentially become worse in North Korea’s future due to poverty greed, gender inequality and the incapacity of broken promises.

Barriers to existing solutions:

As maintained by, Berlinger, J. (2019). Report claims thousands of North Korean women sold into sex slavery in China, provides details that expresses human right barriers that the lack of helping survivors and women who are abused stands in the way of fixing the problem. Now, far as environmental barriers, sources from Wheaton, E. M., Schauer, E. J. and Galli, T. V. (2010), Economics of Human Trafficking, explains that environmental degradation and sex slavery influences people who are being trafficked for labor harms the environment as the result of environmental issues. And the result of cultural barriers depicts North Korea’s values on being accepted and respected back into their families, reflects on accommodation of beliefs and sociological departure among their society. Human barriers has the stronger case, in North Korea human rights are limited. So it’s important that North Koreans should have the right to live life with liberty and freedom from trafficking and torture, but sadly in the case they do not.

Ways To Address The Barriers:

Lastly, in my opinion the best solution to help human trafficking is to take action on behalf of those at risk to sex trafficking. North Korean educators should encourage education for youth on topics such as healthy relationships, self-identity and life skills so that the next generation has knowledge about this topic. And North Koreans refugees should try to seek support from local organizations that serve victims who have been human trafficked, if this is possible. Also in North Korea, it would be beneficial for them to have anti-trafficking organizations and extend low-cost or free services to human trafficking victims.

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