AuthorHall, Michael R.

In November 2000, the United Nations adopted the "Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons Especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime." It stated, "'Trafficking in persons' shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs." (1) The 7th INTERPOL Global Conference on Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in September 2019--three months before the 37th Annual Association of Global South Studies (AGSS) Conference held in Argentina's capital in December 2019. The INTERPOL conference attracted 750 participants from ninety-seven countries who focused on disrupting the "business model" of criminal enterprises behind human trafficking and migrant smuggling. In her opening remarks at the INTERPOL conference, Patricia Bullrich, Argentina's Minister of Security, described human trafficking and migrant smuggling as "the strong over the weak--those who exploit the vulnerability for their own profit." According to Bullrich, "It is important that we understand the essence of the crime, not only to fight the offenders, but also to develop our ability to return freedom and peace of mind to all those who have suffered as victims." (2)

While attending the AGSS conference, Professor of Political Science Sabella Abidde at Alabama State University, Professor of Political Science Jose de Ari-mateia da Cruz at Georgia Southern University, and Professor of History Michael R. Hall at Georgia Southern University--encouraged and influenced by the success and popularity of the recent INTERPOL conference--initiated a project that would examine the issue of human trafficking in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Initially, the plan was to host a series of panels at the 38th annual AGSS conference to be held in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, in October 2020...

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