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    Victims of human traffickers given special status in Belgium

    © Belga
    © Belga

    An inter-departmental cell that coordinates the fight against human trafficking will be asked to conduct an awareness campaign to inform victims that they can request protection in Belgium. This was disclosed by Justice Minister Koen Geens on Friday, after a nine-year-old Palestinian child was found dead at the Broechem centre for asylum-seekers, where he lived with his mother.

    Family members said the mother had received a text message telling her to pay 100,000 euros if she wanted to see her son alive again.

    In Belgium, victims of human traffickers have a right to legal assistance and are given special status along with a provisional residence permit.

    However, to obtain that status, they are required to cooperate with the Justice authorities as they try to dismantle the trafficking networks, which operate across borders, the minister recalled on Friday.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times