Thailand Fishing Boat Slavery May Trigger US Sanctions
Obama administration urges crackdown on forced labor that supplies seafood to Americans.
Forced labor abuses play out on Thai-owned fishing trawlers each day. And the victims — typically destitute men from Myanmar or Cambodia lured by coyotes full of false promises — continue to wash ashore with accounts of torture and casual homicide, reports Global Post.
For years, US officials have urged Thailand, one of America’s closest Asian allies, to rid its $7.3 billion fisheries export industry of these abuses. Though carried out on lawless seas, these crimes risk entangling supermarkets in America, where one in six pounds of seafood is imported from Thailand.
So far, these persistent abuses have hurt Thailand’s reputation but little else. That may change: if one more year passes without major strikes against Thai trafficking syndicates, the US State Department will be forced, by law, to hit Thailand with sanctions.
Source: Global Post