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Bill can help stamp out organ trafficking

The ScotsmanThe Scotsman | March 31, 2015

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 By Calum MacKellar

According to the World Health Organisation, the international trafficking of organs is a growing problem with about 10,000 organs being bought and sold on the black market every year around the world. While there is a small market for hearts, lungs and other body parts, it is kidneys that represent the large majority of organs being trafficked since most people are born with two kidneys and it is possible to survive with only one.

The countries in which organs are being bought from individuals are some of the most impoverished in South America, Africa and Asia, while recipient countries include the United States, Canada, Australia, the UK and Japan.

Trafficking persons for organs involves a whole host of offenders including recruiters who identify potential organ providers, those who arrange transport to the hospitals, the clinical staff responsible for the surgery and the salesmen who organise the trade. Moreover, because of the involvement of so many national and international players, the trafficking is difficult to police...

The Horror of Syrian Refugees Selling Body Parts

 the daily beast

The Daily Beast | April 4, 2015

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By Bill Katsasos

BEIRUT — Lebanon has long been known for unrepentant, sometimes shocking you-can-get-anything-you-want commercialism. But there is a business thriving here now that turns the stomach. As Syrian refugees have poured across the border—they now number 1.3 million in a country whose population previously was 4.5 million—human vultures have closed in on them.

These war profiteers are looking for bits and pieces of people, a kidney here, a cornea there, which can be sold to desperate clients coming from as far away as Finland and Venezuela.
Who are these middlemen? Their victims do not want to say. Where are the surgeries performed? Another closely guarded secret, and not only here in Lebanon.
The United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT) defines the illicit trade in organs around the world as “an organized crime involving a host of offenders”...

Woman Gets 15 Years for Kidney Trafficking

Cambodia DailyThe Cambodia Daily | March 28, 2015

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By Sek Odom

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Friday sentenced a woman to 15 years in jail for convincing her two cousins and a neighbor to sell their kidneys in Thailand last year.

Presiding Judge Keo Mony said 29-year-old Nhem Sinuon— who was arrested in Phnom Penh’s Chroy Changva district in July following a 10-day investigation after two of the victims filed complaints with police—was found guilty of illegally exporting human organs, illegal human trafficking and exploitation. 

Police say Ms. Sinuon had been running a transplant-brokering ring for nearly a year by the time she was arrested, but details of how many such transactions she arranged remain elusive. Ms. Sinuon was found to have forged identification for the two victims so they could pretend to be related to the recipients of their kidneys, which is a requirement under Thai law...

Czech Republic signs treaty to combat human organ trafficking

Prague Daily MonitorPrague Daily Monitor | March 26, 2015
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Santiago de Compostela (Spain), 25.03.2015 – Fourteen European states Wednesday signed the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking in Human Organs, the first international treaty aimed at preventing and combating trafficking in human organs.

The Convention was opened for signature on the first day of an international conference, organised by the Council of Europe and the Spanish government in Santiago de Compostela, to discuss how to better fight trafficking in human organs, and how to implement the new treaty.

The convention was signed by Albania, Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, the Republic of Moldova, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Turkey and the United Kingdom. It is open for signature by any state in the world and will enter into force when five states have ratified it.

“The illicit removal and trafficking of human organs is a serious human rights violation. Donors are often extremely vulnerable individuals exploited by organised crime, which takes advantage of the shortage of organs available for transplantation. International co-operation is essential to fight this crime. I call on states in Europe and beyond to swiftly sign and ratify the convention”, said Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland...


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