Wednesday, February 10, 2010

UNICEF Declares 'Children's Emergency' in Haiti

"Kidnap fears spark Haiti ‘children’s emergency’"

"UNICEF warns lost kids may be kidnapped for adoption, sex abuse or labor
The head of UNICEF warned Tuesday that people may still be trying to smuggle children out of Haiti and said protecting youngsters who survived the earthquake is the top concern of the U.N. children's agency.

Ann Veneman said in an interview with The Associated Press that UNICEF is starting a program to identify children who lost or can't find their parents.

The group is also working with other groups to put children who are alone into facilities where they can receive food, water and psychological help, she said.

'This is a children's emergency,' she said.

Veneman, who visited Haiti last week, said in every humanitarian crisis there's a risk that children will be trafficked out of the country for sexual exploitation, adoption, child labor or other illegal purposes. In Haiti, she said, 'this is a big concern.'"

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