SLAVERY UNDER THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE JUS COGENS PROHIBITION OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING
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Human trafficking for purposes of sexual and other forms of slavery continues to pose a major threat to the human rights and human dignity of many persons. This is particularly the case for young women from Eastern European nations. Not to be confused with human smuggling and undocumented immigration, human trafficking usually aims at exploitation, often through slavery in the form of un-oder underpaid domestic work or forced prostitution. The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) as well as jus cogens outlaw slavery. In this article it is shown by the authors that human trafficking - although not explicitly dealt with in the ECHR - is also prohibited if it aims at creating or maintaining a situation of slavery. Indeed, it is then prohibited by jus cogens and states have a positive obligation to combat human trafficking effectively. Many states fail to do so, showing that this problem is one of law enforcement rather than of creating effective legal norms since those already exist.
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