A recap of Wednesday’s stories: new Syria talks begin in Geneva; Chile pulls out as host of major climate conference; UN calls for national talks to break cycle of violence in Iraq; UN chief voices ‘serious concern’ over Guinea-Bissau political crisis; IOM suspends South Sudan Ebola screening; UN atomic watchdog appoints new leader.
As the first human rights issue to provoke wide international, slavery is perpetuated by traditional practices such as child and forced marriage, and by the fact that almost half the countries in the world have yet to criminalize it.
According to the latest UN figures, 40 million people were living in a state of modern slavery in 2016. One in four children are in forced labour, and about 98 per cent of women who are in forced labour have also been subjected to sexual exploitation.
Incidents of modern-day slavery are “only likely to increase” as a result of some of biggest challenges facing the world today, a UN expert outlined in a report for the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Monday.
Since before the era of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, the arts have been used to confront slavery. Highlighting the importance of creativity as a force for change in societies where people were viewed first and foremost as property, Christopher Cozier highlights the “self-worth process” that led slaves to become full citizens.