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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2005 > March
Media Note
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
March 25, 2005


United States and Sweden Join Forces to Protect Women and Girls from Sex Trafficking

The United States and Sweden are teaming up to fight the trafficking of women and girls for sexual exploitation.

 

In a joint effort, the countries are funding the Prevention Project to support frontline
non-governmental organizations to combat human trafficking and prostitution in 12 European countries.  The Coalition Against Trafficking in Women and the European Women’s Lobby, both non-governmental organizations, are spearheading the effort.

 

The Prevention Project will address gaps in gender equality, the demand for sex trafficking victims, and the connection between human trafficking and prostitution.  The bilateral program also will help promote equality between women and men as a fundamental part of democracy and human rights.

 

The United States and Sweden are contributing approximately $330,000 each over two years
to the project, which will operate in Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Russia, and Serbia and Montenegro. 

 

Ambassador John R. Miller, director of the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, called the partnership an important action to reduce the demand for human trafficking.

 

“The U.S. and Sweden share common ground in fighting sex trafficking by addressing violence against women, the demand for sexual exploitation and the links between prostitution and human trafficking,” Miller said.  “By going after buyers, we can dry up the market for prostitution and the demand for sex trafficking while protecting victims.”

 

The United States opposes legalized or normalized prostitution because it is inherently harmful and dehumanizing and fuels the growth of human trafficking.  Sweden has criminalized the buying of sexual services as an important tool in stamping out sex trafficking and gender inequality.  The United States Government estimates that nearly 70 percent of all victims trafficked across borders are used for commercial sexual exploitation, and women and girls constitute 80 percent of all trafficking victims.

 

For an interview with Ambassador Miller, please contact Public Affairs Specialist Caroline Tetschner at (202) 312-9648 or Gannon Sims at (202) 312-9893.

 

2005/350

Released on March 25, 2005

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