Cambodian police stated they rescued 88 trafficked sex workers and arrested the four men who allegedly coerced them to work in prostitution. Police raided a massage parlour at a hotel in Phnom Penh on Saturday, 25 June 2005, rescuing 56 Cambodians, 28 Vietnamese and 4 Chinese sex workers and detaining the four hotel managers. The women were considered to be victims of human trafficking. They appeared to be aged between 18 and 25.1
The Cambodian government has two months to complete a set of US anti-human trafficking objectives in order to avoid sanctions. The announcement came after Cambodia was downgraded to tier three on the US State Department's anti-human trafficking list in early June.
At a meeting in the US Embassy in Phnom Penh on 14 June 2005, embassy representatives stated that the Cambodian government had 60 days to complete five objectives, namely (1) arrest 10 traffickers, three of which must be convicted; (2) arrest five senior government officials involved in trafficking; (3) rescue 100 victims of trafficking; (4) Launch a full and transparent investigation into Afesip's Chai Hour II case; and (5) Close five establishments that offer victims of trafficking.
NGO representatives said many at the meeting reacted negatively to the new requirements. "You cannot measure commitment to anti-trafficking based on such demands. This could lead to a really negative effect on the big picture."2
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