The Trump administration has called out China, stating that it’s one of the worst human trafficking offenders in the world. Listed alongside North Korea, Iran, Syria and Russia, China has been criticized for not taking enough action against the crime. China, specifically Beijing, isn’t doing enough to stop the crime and has drawn the ire of the Trump administration for the first time.
One of the bigger concerns pointed out by the US was the forced labor of Uighurs, a Muslim minority in China that Beijing hasn’t properly checked to see if they’re trafficking victims. A report by Rex Tillerson, the Secretary of State, claimed that Beijing “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so.” China has yet to respond to these complaints from the US, though one will likely come in the next few days.
Human trafficking has always been a big issue, but the fact that the Trump administration has called out China is huge. The current President of the United States has done little to criticize Beijing, in hopes of a relationship over deep trade differences and North Korea’s nuclear program. It’s also a step forward for the administration, since this is the first time they fully embraced human rights issues, after mostly focusing on security.
According to BBC, China sends plenty of North Koreans back to the country, even though they could face torture or death upon returning. The country doesn’t do thorough enough scanning to see if they’re human trafficking victims, hence the harsh criticism from the United States. Being lumped aside countries that are guilty for child soldiers and other human trafficking laws isn’t a great look for China.
“Human trafficking is a pervasive human rights issue,” said the President’s daughter Ivanka Trump. “Ending human trafficking is a major foreign policy priority for the Trump administration.”