South Korea is edging out Japan as the new destination of Filipino trafficked women, most of whom are forced into sex trade, a woman rights advocate revealed. Carmelita Nuqui, executive director of the Development Action for Women (DAWN), said some 3,000 to 4,000 Filipino entertainers work around the 50 American military bases in South Korea. "They (women entertainers in Korea) enter using valid entertainer visas. They are forced to perform work beyond singing and dancing," said Nuqui at a forum of the Philippine Migrants Rights Watch.
"Their employers -- the club owners and managers -- confiscate their passports and alien registration cards to ensure that the women do not run away," Nuqui said. A portion of their salary is withheld, "forcing them to supplement their income by engaging in other activities, including sexual services," she said.
DAWN is demanding a stop to the issuance of the E-6 visa, or at least to limit it to qualified entertainers with contracts to perform in five-star hotels or similar reputable establishments, said Nuqui.
Nuqui recalled that during her trip to South Korea in August, she noticed that those working in clubs near the US military bases were made to wear sexy outfits, perform on stage, and sell drinks to customers. If they refuse, they risk not getting their salaries.
In contrast, she said those working in hotels earn more and work under better conditions. Nuqui said the position of DAWN on entertainer visas is the same as those of two former Philippine ambassadors to Seoul -- Juanito Jarasa and Aladin Villacorte.
During a recent visit of Ambassador John Miller, director of the US State Department's office to fight human trafficking, Nuqui said she pointed out this new trend. He said poor policing and corruption were hindering a crackdown on human trafficking in the Philippines.
Search the entirety of the site for resources or updates.