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US worst human trafficker: Russia

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US worst human trafficker: Russia
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Moscow: Russia has accused the US of being the world's biggest importer of trafficked humans

The Russian foreign ministry said Monday that the US which has accused Russia of insufficient effort in combating human trafficking is itself the world's biggest importer of trafficked humans.

Russia has been marked a Tier 2 Watch List country in the Trafficking in Persons Report 2012 by the US State Department. According to the report released last week, up to one million people in Russia could qualify for victims of human trafficking.

The report was heavily biased for political reasons, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich in a statement on the ministry's website.

The report paints the US and its allies as "straight-A students" on fighting human trafficking while criticising their geopolitical opponents such as Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Zimbabwe and Syria, a new addition to the Tier 3 list of worst offenders, he added.

Meanwhile, between 100,000 and 500,000 illegal migrants arriving in the US each year are victims of human trafficking, said Lukashevich citing unspecified rights activists.

Up to 100,000 minors a year become involved with the illegal child sex industry in the US and there are reports of sex slaves supplied to US military forces outside the country, he added.

At the same time, Russia does not deny the serious situation with human trafficking within the country and is putting every effort into combating this illegal transnational business, Lukashevich said.

The US State Department was yet to comment on Lukashevich's statement.

IANS

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