This “Joint East West research on trafficking in children for sexual purposes in Europe: the sending countries” (trafficking II) is the second part of a study undertaken by the ECPAT Europe Law Enforcement Group into the trafficking of children for sexual purposes in Europe. The first part of the study (Trafficking I) was published in 2001 and covered the “receiving countries” of Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom. This second part looks at a number of countries in Eastern Europe, estimated to be “sending countries” of minors into the sex trade in countries of Western Europe. The countries covered are Albania, Belarus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Moldova, Romania, Russia and the Ukraine.

The research is part of a programme to combat trafficking in children for sexual purposes in Europe of the ECPAT Europe Law Enforcement Group and ECPAT Netherlands/Defence for Children International The Netherlands. The first part of the research had concluded that there was a need for further research in the countries of origin, and for such research to be carried out in collaboration with partners in those countries. It had identified that the reasons and ways in which children were trafficked needed further exploration, so that prevention strategies could be devised. How states deal with cross-border prostitution and separated minor asylum seekers was also considered a necessary focus of new research, as well as the legislative environment and the application of rules and regulations in the sending countries. Focusing on legislation, law enforcement, co-operation and prevention, and the care facilities available to victims, these current research results are intended to indicate the formulation of specific policy recommendations, as well as to share practical ideas for prevention, training and cooperation. As with Trafficking I, the research has been co-financed by the STOP II programme of the European Commission as well as by the Oak Foundation.

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