Despite centuries of struggle, slavery has not been completely eradicated from the world and those responsible must be held accountable by international means if necessary. This was said by the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan in his message today marking the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.
The message comes at a time when estimated 20,000 Ugandan children have been abducted and forced into slavery by rebels of the Lords Resistance Army (LRA)in northern Uganda.
Some of the children are allegedly traded off to work as slaves while some are shared amongst rebel commanders as wives.
Annan said that many forms of slavery persist; including forced and bonded labour, child labour and slavery for ritual or religious purposes.
Annan called on all countries to ratify and implement existing UN treaties and additional protocols aimed at preventing such practices.