Gov't to boost crackdown on child pornography

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 14) — The government vowed a resolute crackdown on child pornography.

Social Welfare Assistant Secretary Michele Ortega-Pimentel on Tuesday called on Filipinos to report child pornography to the police.

"Nakakalungkot kasi dito, mismong mga magulang pa ang nagpa-facilitate ng pornography. So yung may mga kapitbahay na baka may magaganap na ganun, pakisumbong ho agad ito," Pimentel said.

(Translation: It's sad because sometimes, the parents themselves facilitate pornography. Please report immediately if you know someone who engages in pornography.)

The Philippines commemorated its first "Safer Internet Day" on Tuesday after President Rodrigo Duterte signed Proclamation 417 on February 5.

The Safer Internet Day, which is on every second Tuesday of February, seeks to promote better and safer internet use, especially children.

Safer Internet Day was first introduced in Europe in 2004. It is now observed in more than 100 countries.

A United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) study released in December 2017 recounted harrowing stories of children who were victims of sexual abuse worldwide.

It included the story of a 12-year-old Filipino girl who was forced to livestream sexual acts from her neighbor's house.

"When the foreigner says 'get naked,' then we undress.… The foreigners were from USA, Australia, UK, China. I would say, 'You want to buy a show?' And the foreigner would say, 'Yes'," the UNICEF report read.

The girl would earn P150 or $3 for each "show."

In May 2017, a raid of U.S. citizen David Timothy Deakin's house in Pampanga province, north of Manila, yielded hundreds of photos and videos of sexually exploited children.

Authorities said the materials were distributed worldwide through the internet.

UNICEF said in 2016 the Philippines is the top global source of child pornography, and the "epicenter of the live-stream sexual abuse trade."

READ: Internet providers urged to tackle live-streaming of child sex in the Philippines