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Cambodia Launches Day Against Trafficking

About 200 officials and school children celebrated National Trafficking Day Tuesday at Wat Phnom, in an effort supported by the Ministry of Women's Affairs and 13 non-governmental organizations.

Human trafficking for sex and labor remain constant threats to many of the poor in Cambodia, and the US has put the government on a watch list of countries that fail to do enough to combat the crimes.

Organizations said Tuesday they were seeking to disseminate more information about the dangers of trafficking to help people protect themselves from recruiters and human smugglers.

"In Cambodia the children are vulnerable because of weak education, leading to children being victims because of the pushing," said Chea Pidaen, a coordinator for the rights group alliance ACT. "Push factors" refer to circumstances that force children to be trafficked, such as poverty.

Women's Affairs Ministry State Secretary You Ay said the day was a reminder to parents and guardians to be careful their children are not lured into work in cities or abroad.

"All should unite to help our children from being trafficked," You Ay said. "Education should be given to understand the dangers of trafficking."