Romania criticised for trafficking children refugees and Roma
The number of child victims of trafficking in Romania has increased considerably, a Council of Europe report said Friday, urging particular attention be paid to the country's Roma minority and migrant kids.
"The number of identified child victims of trafficking in Romania has increased considerably in the reporting period," the Council's Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) said.
The report covering 2011-2015 urged Romania "to intensify their efforts to prevent trafficking in children, in particular by training child protection professionals and paying special attention to Roma communities and migrant children".
Most (54 percent) of the 4,622 victims identified were trafficked for sexual exploitation, followed by labour exploitation (34 percent) and forced begging (six percent).
Despite some progress, improvements are needed in preventing trafficking, identifying victims, providing them with assistance and facilitating their reintegration and compensation, GRETA said.
Improvements included developing the legal framework for combating trafficking, raising awareness and training, particularly for border police.
The report also commended the "high rate" of criminal convictions.
Thousands of lone children have joined refugees travelling from refugee camps in Turkey and elsewhere to Europe.