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Comments by YACCS
Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Orphan hunting


Children-survivors board a C-130 transport plane at military-controlled airport in Banda Aceh, 1 Jan 2005 Young victims of the tsunami are especially vulnerable


Criminals target tsunami victims
By Kate McGeown
BBC News

They have already survived an experience that most people can scarcely imagine. But the victims of the Asian tsunami now face a new danger - criminals and opportunists trying to cash in on their misfortune.

"Unfortunately it's a golden opportunity for people to make money," said criminal psychologist Mike Berry.

"Some people will be incredibly depressed and that makes them easy targets. They are very vulnerable," he told the BBC News website.

Given the scale of the disaster, it is remarkable that only isolated examples of crime have emerged so far. But for the already traumatised victims, the impact can be devastating.

There are already reports of looting in many of the affected countries - with homes, shops and even dead bodies being targeted.

And in Sri Lanka, some of the disaster victims have allegedly been raped in refugee camps.

One of the most disturbing allegations is that criminal gangs are befriending children orphaned by the tsunami, and selling them to sex traffickers.

The Indonesian government has banned children under the age of 16 from being transferred from the devastated province of Aceh amid fears that trafficking syndicates were moving into the area.

The UN's children's' agency, Unicef, said it had received several reports of criminals offering kidnapped children from Aceh for sale or adoption.

A spokesman for Unicef in Indonesia, John Budd, said there had been one confirmed case of a child being smuggled from the devastated Indonesian province of Aceh to the nearby city of Medan for trafficking purposes.

He said there were also unconfirmed reports of up to 20 other children being taken to Malaysia, and possible hundreds to Jakarta.

"I don't think you could have a more vulnerable child on Earth than a child in this situation," Mr Budd told the BBC News website.

"A young child who has gone through what they have witnessed will be barely surviving in terms of psychological health."

While he stressed that at least some of these children could have been taken by people who are simply well-meaning, Unicef was very concerned that others were being abducted by organised gangs, posing as NGOs or family friends.

Mr Budd has recently become aware of an SMS message being sent widely around Asia advertising 300 Aceh orphans for sale.

He said that as a matter of urgency, Unicef was setting up registration schemes around Aceh to account for all children currently on their own.

The threat to children is not confined to Aceh. There are reports that a 12-year-old Swedish boy injured in the tsunami in Thailand may have been kidnapped from a hospital.

The boy's American father flew to Thailand to find him. But although staff said he had been there the day after the disaster, there was no longer any trace of him.

.........................

Even the dead are not safe from those who want to cash in on the disaster.

Jewellery has been reportedly stolen from the bodies of victims in Thailand - and from their homes and shops.

Other countries in the region have been plagued with fake tsunami warnings.

In both East Timor and Malaysian Borneo, false reports of an imminent disaster have forced people from their homes - leaving them empty, and ideal hunting grounds for looters.

Opportunists are not only targeting the countries directly affected by the quake, but also others - many on the other side of the world - which have lost citizens in the disaster.

More than 2,000 people are feared dead in Sweden, but the authorities in Stockholm have said they are not publishing the names of those affected for fear that thieves could break into their properties.

Even those who want to donate to the crisis have been affected.

A collection box for the disaster appeal was stolen from Salisbury Cathedral in England, and fake e-mail messages claiming to be from Oxfam have been sent to people in Hong Kong, asking them to donate money to the relief effort.

Any money donated went instead to a bank account in Europe, according to police and charity workers.


Jen

Note the following paragraph:

One of the most disturbing allegations is that criminal gangs are befriending children orphaned by the tsunami, and selling them to sex traffickers.

Now, in the "Mishnah" (Jewish folk-writings, etc), there is still a belief that G-d and the Devil still talk via messengers. I can just picture Satan sending a letter, post-haste, to the Angel of Death: "Samael, dude, give me at least ten years more of life for each of these scumbags--it will take me at LEAST that long to think of something creative to do with them that they deserve...I mean, sex trafficking disaster orphans--even I'M shocked
!"

Vultures always come out.

While Fred Phelps seems to rejoice in the deaths of American tourists, the sad fact is that part of the attraction of South Asia is the easy availablity of child sex partners. American news reports have hidden what most US sailors know by heart, that if it's human, you can fuck it in Phuket, transgender, straight, gay, teens. While many people, especially the Swedes, were travelling with families, some of the tourists had other agendas.

After every tragedy, people try to cash in. A criminal doesn't stop being a criminal.

posted by Steve @ 1:01:00 PM

1:01:00 PM

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