ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – Security officials in Baghdad on Thursday said they had arrested a network of human traffickers in possession of a girl no older than two months.
In a statement following the operation, the Baghdad Operations Command said that security forces were able to arrest three people accused of trafficking humans in an area north of the Iraqi capital, adding the suspects were in possession of a 50-day-old girl.
The trafficking of humans has increased in several cities across Iraq since the fall of the former dictatorship in 2003, according to statistics on the Iraqi Interior Ministry’s website.
On Sunday, the Interior Ministry announced the arrest of a man who was trying to sell a 17-year-old girl for 7,000 USD in the Dora district, south of Baghdad.
The Office of the Inspector-General of the Interior Ministry said the alleged deal was foiled after security forces had ambushed and seized the suspect who was trying to sell the teenager and “exploit her for the purposes of prostitution and human trafficking.”
The Ministry added that the inspection unit “organized an arrest warrant and issued the testimony of the girl to be presented to the investigating judge.”
Last week, security forces arrested four people on charges of human trafficking in Baghdad’s Adhamiya and Kadhamiya regions, freeing a kidnapped woman.
The arrest prompted a member of the Committee on Women, Family, and Childhood in the Iraqi Parliament to demand that the problem of human trafficking become a top concern for the Iraqi government.