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A Council of Europe Convention to combat trafficking in human organs

 Council of Europe logo
Council of Europe | July 9, 2014

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Strasbourg – The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has adopted an international convention to make trafficking in human organs for transplant a criminal offence, to protect victims and to facilitate cooperation at national and international levels in order to prosecute more effectively those responsible for trafficking.

The Convention calls on governments to establish as a criminal offence the illegal removal of human organs from living or deceased donors:

- where the removal is performed without the free, informed and specific consent of the living or deceased donor, or, in the case of the deceased donor, without the removal being authorised under its domestic law;
- where, in exchange for the removal of organs, the living donor, or a third party, receives a financial gain or comparable advantage;
- where in exchange for the removal of organs from a deceased donor, a third party receives a financial gain or comparable advantage.

The Convention also provides protection measures and compensation for victims as well as prevention measures to ensure transparency and equitable access to transplantation services...

Police Arrest Cross-Border Kidney Trader

cambodia dailyThe Cambodia Daily | July 3, 2014
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A woman accused of persuading vulnerable people to sell their kidneys to patients in Thai hospitals was arrested in Phnom Penh on Tuesday night. Among her five alleged victims are two of her brothers and a cousin.

Yem Azisah, a 29-year-old woman who also goes by the name Sinuon, was arrested near her Chroy Changva district home by anti-human trafficking police acting on a complaint from one of her victims, whose motorbike had been held ransom by Ms. Sinuon as she sought her cut of the $13,000 price she had brokered for the man’s kidney...

We shouldn't treat kidneys as commodities

LA TimesLOS ANGELES TIMES | June 30, 2014
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Tens of thousands of Americans are waiting for a kidney transplant. The gap between the demand for donated kidneys and the supply creates a situation that free-market cheerleaders can't bear to leave alone: People have two kidneys, so why not end our shortage of organs for transplantation by adopting a "cash for kidneys" program in place of the current law against organ sales? Gary Becker, a Nobel laureate in economics, calculated that putting a $15,000 price tag on donated kidneys would generate enough sellers to meet current needs.

But buying and selling organs is a dangerous and misguided game, no matter how exalted the theorists playing it or how seemingly straightforward their calculations...

Nepal's Organ Trail: How traffickers steal kidneys

CNN kidney vendor NepaliCNN | June 26, 2014
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Kathmandu, Nepal -- On the streets of Kathmandu, the sight of people begging for kidney treatment has become common.

The capital of Nepal is no different from many places in the world where aging populations, poor diets and no health insurance systems mean increased organ disease.

The organ in highest demand is the kidney and black market traffickers are meeting that demand. Up to 7,000 kidneys are obtained illegally every year, according to a report by Global Financial Integrity...

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