Chinese Men Buying Brides From Vietnam Is Getting Out Of Control

ImageProxy.mvcWhen Kiab turned 16, her brother promised to take her to a party in a tourist town in northern Vietnam. Instead, he sold her to a Chinese family as a bride.
The ethnic Hmong teenager spent nearly a month in China until she was able to escape her new husband, seek help from local police and return to Vietnam.

“My brother is no longer a human being in my eyes — he sold his own sister to China,” Kiab, whose name has been changed to protect her identity, told AFP at a shelter for trafficking victims in the Vietnamese border town Lao Cai.

Vulnerable women in countries close to China — not only Vietnam but also North Korea, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar — are being forced into marriages in the land of the one-child policy, experts say.

China suffers from one of the worst gender imbalances in the world as families prefer male children.

As a result millions of men now cannot find Chinese brides — a key driver of trafficking, according to rights groups.

The Lao Cai shelter currently houses a dozen girls from various ethnic minority groups. All say they were tricked by relatives, friends or boyfriends and sold to Chinese men as brides.

“I had heard a lot about trafficking. But I couldn’t imagine it would happen to me,” Kiab said.

As trafficking is run by illegal gangs and the communities involved are poor and remote, official data is patchy and likely underestimates the scale of the problem, experts say.

But rights workers across Southeast Asia say they are witnessing “systematic” trafficking of women into China for forced marriages.

“This problem has largely been swept under the rug by the Chinese authorities,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at New York-based Human Rights Watch.

Tricked and sold… Read more HERE

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