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Human trafficking rivals drug trade as world's most profitable criminal activity: Vatican official

October 31, 2013

At an October 31 press conference, introducing plans for a weekend seminar on human trafficking, the chancellor of the Pontifical Academies of Sciences said that human trafficking is “a shocking offense against human dignity and a grave violation of fundamental human rights.”

Archbishop Marcelo Sanchez-Sorondo noted UN estimates that over 20 million people have been exploited as forced laborers in the past decade. Along with virtual slavery, human trafficking also produces victims for sexual exploitation and for the harvesting of organs. The archbishop said that human trafficking today threatens to overtake the drug trade as “the most profitable criminal activity in the world.”

The November 1-2 seminar at the Vatican, co-sponsored by the Pontifical Academies of Sciences with the World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations, will seek “to establish the real state of this phenomenon and an agenda to combat this heinous crime.”


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