Date: Wed, 22 May 1996 01:52:42 GMT
/* Written 12:06 PM May 9, 1996 by DEBRA@OLN.comlink.apc.org in
Child Prostitution Seen As Threat to Eastern Europe
Reuter, 29 April 1996
[This article has been excerpted.]
STRASBOURG, France (Reuter) - Child prostitution is gaining ground in eastern Europe and some children are being shipped to the West and forced into pornographic films, experts told an European conference on child sex Thursday.
A survey presented at the meeting of politicians and experts in...Strasbourg said child prostitution, a plague in southeast Asia, had spread to eastern Europe and Latin America.
It fed on fears of AIDS which stimulated the demand for virgins, and on progress in communications technology which led to a proliferation of child pornography.
" We urgently need immediate action to protect the rights of...exploited children," said the head of UNICEF for Europe, Paul Ignatieff, as he opened the two-day conference.
Victims were being recruited among an estimated 100,000 homeless children in eastern Europe, according to the survey by the ECPAT organization.
Child prostitution was rife in bars, hotels and around train stations. Experts blamed local gangsters, poverty, and lax attitudes developing as a reaction after the fall of puritannical communist regimes.
It said...boy prostitutes came mainly from Romania, Poland and the Czech Republic.
Young girls were being taken from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus to Poland, Hungary and the Baltic states, some of them going on to western Europe, mainly Germany and the Netherlands.
Another route was for girls to go from Romania to northern Europe, Italy, Turkey and Cyprus.
The meeting, at the headquarters of the 39-nation Council of Europe, was part of the preparations for the United Nations World Congress against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children to be held in Stockholm in August.