31 March, 2005
U.S. Congresswomen Deborah Pryce of Ohio, Kay Granger of Texas, and Thelma Ake of Virginia visited Athens on March 29, to learn about the situation of trafficked people in Greece.
The delegation met with general secretary George Gennimatas of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, secretary general Panos Panouris of the Ministry of Justice, Secretary General Leonidas Evangelides of the Ministry of Public Order, Secretary General Joanna Despotopoulou of the Ministry of Health, representatives of the police, the Ombudsman and a number of non-governmental organizations including ARSIS, Stop Now!, Klimaka, Greek Helsinki Monitor, Act Up, and Doctors of the World. They also visited a shelter for victims of trafficking.
At the conclusion of their trip, Chairwoman Pryce remarked that "The United States and Greece unfortunately aren't the only countries that face this modern day form of slavery. The trafficking of women and kids for sexual exploit is a transnational issue. It affects every nation in this world. It is a global crisis. It is a global health crisis. We desire to work together with Greece to curtail trafficking and strongly encourage all facets of Greece from the government to NGOs to the community to communicate, collaborate, and make an effort to stop this crisis."
Athens was the first stop of a trip that also includes Moldova, Italy, and Albania.
Source: Athens News Agency