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Word Count: 591
Child prostitution is not new But today it has assumed the proportions of a multibillion-dollar industry with children being bought sold and traded like other mass-produced goods Although child prostitution exists worldwide the center of the child sex industry is Asia where approximately 1 million children are prostitutes and the number is still growing Child sex tourism is a significant component in the sexual exploitation of children and one that is expanding It involves an individual traveling to a country with the inten-tion of seeking out sex with children Glossy brochures as well as web sites on the Internet advertise packages for travelers complete with airfare hotel and directions to local brothels This epidemic is spreading to other poverty-ridden areas of the world such as Latin America and Eastern Europe As troubling as it may sound the explosion of the child sex trade comes down to two basic market forces supply and demand Environmental stress and the rapidly widening gap between the rich and the poor are producing more potential exploiters of the sex industry And the sex traffickers have stepped in to take advantage of the situa-tion while society has simply looked the other way Rural poverty and pressing socio-economic conditions have served to expand the potential supply of child prostitutes Some children are lured away from broken homes by recruiters who promise poor children jobs in the city Poverty often creates desperate measures for the necessities of life Many parents can hardly feed them-selves and find it nearly impossible to refuse cash payment in exchange for one of their daughters The Internet is also an effective tool that is being used to market sex tour-ism and promote growth in the child sex industry The web sites provide an interna-tional forum where individuals can promote and sell sex tours online Although it may seem incomprehensible to most of us there is a need to help explain the distorted reasons that tourists travel
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