March 25, 2008

This is the story of the 21st century’s trade in slave-children

I didn’t read this special investigation by Johann Hari until today, when the article was republished in Italian version (see the previous post). Of course, given the theme of the article, a few days delay in the reading—the article was published on March 15th in The Independent—doesn’t make a big difference. And this is also why I think I am still in time to draw my readers’ attention to what Hari wrote. “This is the story of the 21st century’s trade in slave-children,” is the incipit of Hari's special report.

My journey into their underworld took place where its alleys and brothels are most dense - Asia, where the United Nations calculates 1 million children are being traded every day. It took me to places I did not think existed, today, now. To a dungeon in the lawless Bangladeshi borderlands where children are padlocked and prison-barred in transit to Indian brothels; to an iron whore-house where grown women have spent their entire lives being raped; to a clinic that treat syphilitic 11-year-olds. [...]

It’s a sad, tragic story. I think the author deserves our thanks for having told us a bitter truth.

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