A Review of Data on Trafficking in the Republic of Korea

image of A Review of Data on Trafficking in the Republic of Korea

The US State Department included South Korea among its list of twenty-three countries that failed to meet minimum standards in attempting to stop the trafficking in human beings, primarily women and children exploited for prostitution. This report surveys the trafficking of women from countries such as the Philippines, Russia, and other nations of the former Soviet Union into South Korea. It systematically presents relevant data and research findings on this serious and growing phenomenon, and –by including both the South Korean government’s approach and the viewpoint of South Korean NGOs –it provides a balanced analysis.



Executive summary

This study, which is part of IOM Seoul’s continuing effort to bring together and publicize accurate information on trafficking in the Republic of Korea (hereafter, South Korea), collects and presents data that were locally gathered by South Korean organizations. However, in preparing this study it became immediately evident that there is not a clear or consistent definition of trafficking in South Korea. This, in turn, deprived researchers of a lucid delineation on what to measure in order to estimate the scale of trafficking in South Korea. In addition, even though there is trafficking of both local and foreign women from South Korea into other countries, this is not always regarded as trafficking, so there afe few resources available which are useful to study trafficking out of South Korea.


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