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US to Oppose Development Loans to Russia, Other Nations Over Trafficking Law

© Flickr / Peter MillerHuman trafficking
Human trafficking - Sputnik International
The United States will oppose development bank loans to Russia and a number of other nations that do not comply with a 15-year old US law regarding human trafficking, President Barack Obama wrote in a memorandum to Secretary of State John Kerry.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 establishes protections for undocumented immigrants who are victims of sex trafficking and slavery.

"[I] instruct the United States Executive Director of each multilateral development bank and of the International Monetary Fund to vote against and use best efforts to deny any loan or other utilization of the funds of the respective institution… to Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Russia and Zimbabwe until such governments comply with the minimum standards or makes significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance," Obama wrote on Tuesday.

Members of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) stand in the village of Shyrokyne, Donetsk region on July 4, 2015 - Sputnik International
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US policy is to deny financial assistance to foreign governments that do not meet Washington's standards for the elimination of human trafficking.

The law makes an exception for humanitarian and trade-related assistance or development aid that is allocated to address human needs.

In June, the US Department of State acknowledged in its annual report that Russian authorities had convicted more people for sex and drug trafficking crimes in 2015 than in previous years.

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