The CNN Freedom Project is a year-long campaign aimed at stamping out modern-day slavery. This is a despicable business worth $32 billion annually, according to UN estimates. But it's also an elusive business. When we report that there could be 10 million or 30 million slaves in the world today, we're conveying not just the scale but the inscrutability of this global scourge.
This week, CNN's News Stream picks up the baton and provides the lead voice in the campaign. Throughout the week beginning Monday 11 April, we'll attempt to shine a light on this darkest of industries. But we'll also put an unmistakably News Stream stamp on our coverage. This means demonstrating how technology is helping to track and tackle slavery right around the world.
Our output begins Monday with visual answers to the burning questions. Which countries produce the most slaves and where are these slaves employed? And which international borders fail the test when it comes to human trafficking? We've mapped it all out – and illustrated the extremes. As the video above shows, the developing world does not have a monopoly on this degrading trade.
Monday also sees the launch of Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher's "Real Men Don't Buy Girls" campaign. Justin Timberlake and Sean Penn among the stars signing up to fight sex slavery. And the exposure they'll bring to the topic can only be a good thing.
As the week progresses, we'll delve deeper inside the issue. Among the features you can expect:
Stay tuned to News Stream at 1pm London and 8pm Hong Kong, Monday through Friday. We're committed to getting under the skin of the slavery problem – and exemplifying the innovative ideas that will eventually ensure its end.
Catch News Stream with Kristie Lu Stout weekdays at 8pm HKT/ 12pm GMT / 8am ET on CNN International.